The ongoing COVID-19 epidemic has disrupted the daily lives of everyone in the nation, and that is highly unfortunate.
It has particularly affected schools, which have been closed since mid-March and will not reopen this term. Students have done their studies from home and submitted their assignments via computer or by turning paperwork in to schools for grading.
For two months, this whole epidemic has changed life as we’ve known it and there is no indication that an end is in the near future.
Knowing that, we feel bad for everyone whose lives have been altered and affected by this epidemic, especially those who were about to graduate high school. Graduating high school is a big time in a young person’s life. They are ending one chapter and beginning a new one, whether it be going to college, entering their chosen trade or going into the military.
One of the big excitements for a graduating senior is the actual graduation ceremony. Sadly, due to this epidemic, area high schools had to announce that they will not be able to hold commencement ceremonies this year.
This is extremely unfortunate and we know puts a damper on the senior years of those who looked forward to walking the line with their friends. But we understand and appreciate the difficult decisions made by the Bowling Green Independent School District and the Warren County Public Schools to cancel the ceremonies.
The districts are working to make up for the cancellations by giving graduating seniors some options.
BGISD Superintendent Gary Fields said the district is planning to hold a virtual ceremony at 2 p.m. May 24. Viewers should expect remarks from Fields, Bowling Green High School Principal Kyle McGraw, school board Chair Jane Wilson and the senior class president.
The week leading up to the ceremony — May 17-20 — will be “Graduation Week.” During those four days, the district would like graduates to schedule appointments to come to the high school’s arena dressed in their caps and gowns. With a small number of family members present, each senior will be able to collect their diploma and walk across the stage, with opportunities for photos and video.
The Warren County Board of Education is also working to get graduation plans in order during this epidemic. WCPS Superintendent Rob Clayton said graduations will take the form of an alternative celebration May 22-23 with the hope of holding an in-person ceremony Aug. 1 or Aug. 2, if public health guidelines permit.
The plans laid out by both school boards seem like reasonable attempts to allow graduating seniors the chance to feel like they are part of a graduation ceremony. It had to be hard for the school boards to make these decisions in such trying times, but we believe they made good calls regarding graduations and commend them for doing so.
In closing, we would like to say congratulations to all high school graduating classes of 2020. Good luck in the next chapters of your lives.