Bay Shore district optimistic for in-person graduation ceremony


Graduation day marks the end of high school, and Bay Shore Schools is determined to have this year’s seniors finish their high school careers with appropriate recognition and the most normalcy possible. School district superintendent Joseph Bond prepared a letter to the Bay Shore-Brightwaters community on May 13, announcing the current plan continuing to expect a social-distance-friendly graduation on June 26.

“We are moving ahead with planning for this date out of an abundance of optimism,” Bond’s letter reads, con- tinuing on to explain that a number of restrictions would be necessary to incorporate in the event that the ceremony does indeed occur on this date. “We will utilize as much field space as necessary to ensure social distance between our graduating students. We will also take measures to ensure there is social distancing among attendees.”

Bond added that each student is allowed to bring two guests to observe, and there will be no exceptions.

As it is absolutely possible that the restrictions put in place by New York State and Suffolk County in order to limit the spread of COVID-19 could bar the district from holding a gradua- tion in June, Bond announced that the make-up date would be July 31.

“Again, limits will be placed on the number of guests that will be allowed per graduate and the appropriate social-distancing provisions will be put in place,” Bond wrote. “In the event that gatherings are not allowable in July, we have looked at dates further into the future to hold a ceremony for the Class of 2020 and will communicate those dates should the need arise.”

Considering the announcement of a make-up date for a graduation day roughly one month away, there is a commitment by the school district to host an in-person and observable celebration for the Class of 2020.

“We believe that our senior class deserves the recognition that they have worked hard to achieve,” Bond wrote. “However, there is nothing more important than the health and safety of our students, staff and community, and we will act accordingly.”


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