The Bedford Area School District’s Plans for Graduation
The Bedford Area School District realizes the considerable impact COVID 19 has on the community, parents, and students. Like many who are struggling with unexpected hurdles, our seniors never expected their senior year to end rapidly and miss so much. As educators, we know the senior year is structured in a manner that allows seniors to pass through some culminating events as they transition to their next phase of life. Unfortunately, we can’t replace some events, but the district is committed to providing the best graduation possible given the current circumstances.
Throughout this pandemic, the district endeavored to make decisions in a timely manner rather than rushing into future decisions. In the case of graduation, the district’s current information indicates the chances of a large-group gathering are few to nonexistent. The Governor recently announced Bedford County will turn yellow on May 15, 2020. Under the Yellow phase, large gatherings over 25 people are prohibited. Additionally, there is no timeline for the county to enter the Green phase. It is important to note the Green phase does not mean we can return to normal. The State still requires the county to follow CDC and/or Department of Health guidelines, and we cannot assume large group gatherings will be permitted. Given these current factors, the district developed plans for graduation with the following goals: 1) Celebrate our seniors and honor their time at BASD, 2) Permit parents and other important guests to participate and take pictures, and 3) Create a special culminating event.
The following Question and Answer will provide information about two important culminating events. The first event is senior obligation and cap and gown distribution, called Curbside Day. On this day, seniors are asked to return uniforms, books, iPads, pay obligations and pick up district awards, health records, and caps/gowns. For specific details about curbside day, please see the Q&A below. The second event is graduation. For more information about the district’s plan for graduation, please see the Q&A below.
What is Curbside Day?
Curbside Day is the dedicated time(s) for seniors to return all school district property. Students will return their iPads, books, and sports uniforms while remaining inside their vehicles. In addition, students should pay outstanding obligations with cash. Lastly, students will pick up their caps and gowns and any awards they won at the Awards Ceremony.
How is Curbside Day going to happen?
We assigned seniors a time slot based on their last name. Seniors will enter the school parking lot via the John Street entrance. Once entering the parking lot, they will be directed to a series of tables.
Table 1 – Students will return books and uniforms.
Table 2 – Students will return their iPad.
Table 3 – If a student has an obligation they will pay for their obligation in cash. We will not accept checks.
Table 4 – Students will receive their caps/gowns, school records, and any awards they earned.
When is Curbside Day going to happen?
Curbside Day is scheduled for Thursday, May 21st beginning at 2:00PM.
Students last name A-B: 2:00 PM
Students last name C-D: 2:30 PM
Students last name E-G: 3:00 PM
Students last name H-K: 3:30 PM
Students last name L-M: 4:00 PM
Students last name N-P: 4:30 PM
Students last name R-S: 5:00 PM
Students last name T-Z: 5:30 PM
What happens if I cannot make my scheduled time for Curbside Day?
Please make every possible effort to keep your appointed time. However, if you have an extreme circumstance, please contact Mr. Kane or Mr. Steele in order to resolve your issue prior to May 26th. The district will not distribute caps and gowns prior to May 21st.
How do I know if I owe an obligation?
A district employee will contact you via phone prior to Curbside Day if you have an obligation.
What if I lost my uniform, book(s) or iPad (including damaged iPads)?
If you realize you lost school district property prior to curbside day, please contact Mr. Kane or Mr. Steele immediately so the district can advise you about your obligation. The district will provide you with the cost to replace the item and you will pay this obligation at Table 3 during Curbside Day.
What happens if I don’t take care of my obligations or return my materials?
The District will hold your cap and gown until we resolve this issue. We recommend you contact Mr. Kane or Mr. Steele as soon as possible to resolve this issue and receive your cap and gown prior to graduation.
Mr. Kane- email@example.com
Mr. Steele- firstname.lastname@example.org
The Bedford Area School District endeavors to provide the graduate and guests with a great graduation ceremony. As we developed our plans, we focused on creating a special event that is also visitor friendly. We believe a formal graduation ceremony where students receive their diplomas and have an opportunity for closure is important. The Bedford Area School District’s graduation will occur in the auditorium of Bedford High School over several days. Students will sign up in advance for a date and time slot. There will be opportunities for the graduate and guests to take pictures prior to and during the graduation ceremony. Please see the information below about graduation.
Where is graduation?
The Bedford Class of 2020 graduation will occur in the auditorium of Bedford High School.
When is graduation?
The Class of 2020 graduation will occur on May 28th, 29th, and 30th. When you and your graduate register for graduation, you will choose your date and time.
How do I register for the Class of 2020 Graduation?
Students should register by CLICKING HERE, read the disclaimer, and then follow the directions to select a date and time that works best for them and their guests. If you do not register by May 26th, the district will assume you are choosing not to participate in graduation services.
Do I have to attend the Class of 2020 Graduation?
No. The district does not require students to attend their graduation ceremony. If you choose not to attend, you can pick up your diploma on May 29th by making an appointment with Mr. Kane or Mr. Steele. If you plan on attending, you MUST register on the school district website.
What is the last day I can register for the Class of 2020 Graduation?
May 26th by 3:00 PM
How many people can attend the Class of 2020 Graduation?
The graduation ceremony is closed to the public and is only open to graduates and their guests. Graduates may invite up to ten guests. If you have an extenuating circumstance requiring additional guests, please contact Mr. Kane or Mr. Steele.
Are tickets required?
No. Since we are registering students online for graduation, tickets are NOT required for attendees.
Will the graduation be live streamed?
Yes. The district will provide live stream for the community, family, and friends to watch graduation. Also, the district will publish the graduation schedule including date and time of each graduate’s ceremony. Please CLICK HERE on May 27th to view the graduation schedule and get directions for the live stream.
How can fellow classmates and friends celebrate graduation?
Since the graduation will be live streamed and you regularly use social media, we encourage you to congratulate your friends in real time via social media as they graduate.
How is the district dealing with social distancing?
The district will observe social distancing during the ceremony. The district’s plan and registration process allows for separation between the graduation parties attending their respective ceremonies. However, families should know graduates and their ten guests will not be able to attend and maintain social distancing. Therefore, we encourage families and guests to take the appropriate precautions as necessary, for example hand washing, wearing masks, etc.
Will the district regularly clean doors and other points of contact?
Yes. The district created a route for graduation in such a way that graduates do not have to touch any doors. Additionally, we will have cleaning staff on hand to clean between graduation appointments.
Special Note: Graduation Video
Since the Class of 2020 faced considerable adversity, the district plans to mail each graduate a DVD of graduation. This video will include the normal graduation speeches and footage of each student graduating. We anticipate mailing the video during the summer months.
Your Graduation Day Ceremony
The following is information about your graduation day ceremony. Please read the following Q&A carefully to learn about the ceremony.
Where do I park?
We ask all participants to park in the Bedford High School parking lot off John Street.
When should I arrive?
Please arrive 5 to 10 minutes prior to your scheduled time.
Where do I enter?
Bedford Area School District staff will meet you on the sidewalk in front of Bedford High School and give you directions about entering graduation. You will enter the building by climbing the stairs to enter the high school’s main entrance.
What if my guest(s) is unable to use stairs or has difficulty walking longer distances?
Please make arrangements with Mr. Kane or Mr. Steele prior to your graduation day so we can provide access to the elevators in the school and an alternative route to attend the ceremony.
What if it rains?
The District will supply several portable tents on the sidewalk outside of the high school for guests as shelter from the rain. We also ask you to bring umbrellas to use between tents and walking from the parking lot.
What should I wear to the Class of 2020 Graduation?
Seniors should wear their caps and gowns, along with any tassels/stoles*/cords/medals that graduates received during their time at Bedford High School. Traditionally, male graduates wear dress pants and a collared shirt and tie under their caps and gowns. Ladies normally wear dress pants or a dress under their caps and gowns.
*A stole is piece of cloth, scarf-like, worn around the neck. For example, class officers wear a stole representing their elected class office.
Will my family get to hear my name called during the ceremony?
Absolutely. Your name will be called prior to you crossing the graduation stage. You will be declared a graduate by school administration and have the chance to move your tassel from the right to the left after the declaration.
Will a professional photographer take my photo when I receive my diploma?
We will release more information about the professional photographer in the upcoming days. You will also have the opportunity to take your own photographs at the front of the school prior to graduation and while receiving your diploma.