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Schools plan graduation ceremonies

This spring looks like it will be packed with celebrations as local high schools begin solidifying their graduation plans.

Last month, Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam released guidance on how K-12 schools, colleges and universities can safely hold in-person graduation and commencement ceremonies. The  guidelines capped outdoor ceremonies at 5,000 people or 30% of venue capacity, whichever is less, and limited indoor ceremonies to 500 people or 30% capacity, whichever is less.

With state guidelines in mind, local high schools have set their graduation plans in place.

Buckingham County Public Schools Superintendent Dr. Daisy Hicks said that Buckingham will be holding a more traditional graduation ceremony May 15 at 9 a.m. on the school’s football field Hicks said the ceremony will include limited family attendance, and CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) guidelines for graduation ceremonies will be implemented.

According to Chip Jones, superintendent of Cumberland County Public Schools, Cumberland High School will be having two separate indoor graduation ceremonies Friday, May 14, at the high school gym.

Jones said seniors who attended school on A weeks will have their graduation ceremony at 10 a.m., while B week students will have their ceremony at 2 p.m. Each senior will be provided with eight guest tickets. Socially distanced seating will be provided for graduates and their guests, and temperature checks will be performed upon entry. Masks will be required.

Prince Edward County High School will honor its graduates in a formal ceremony Saturday, May 22, at 10 a.m., although a location for the ceremony has not yet been announced.

Fuqua School in Farmville will hold its graduation ceremony Friday, May 28, at 6 p.m. on the school’s front lawn at the bell tower. Families will be seated in “pods” 10 feet apart from one another. Social distancing guidelines as directed by the governor, including screening, temperature checks, masks and social distancing will be followed.