MERIDEN — The Meriden Public Schools graduation committee is finalizing its graduation plans for live-streamed events at both high schools that will allow for social distancing.
A virtual meeting with committee members is scheduled for Tuesday at 9:30 a.m. to gather input and set the final details. The public may join the meeting by phone +1 409-923-0023 (PIN: 232550564) or online meet.google.com/atc-kmyd-vyr.
The current graduation date for both Platt and Maloney high schools is set for June 11 with the ceremony live streamed on both school’s websites at 6 p.m. on June 12. The raindate is June 12 for the processions, and June 13 for the live stream.
The committee of teachers, administrators, Board of Education members and students had considered the possiblity of waiting until July 6, when Gov. Ned Lamont revised his executive orders to allow 150 people to attend an event. But according to Board of Eductation President Robert Kosienski if you have two groups of 50 students, with two tickets per student, you filled the stadium. “The kids said they wanted to all be together,” Koskienski said.
Local health officials also favored the current plan, he said.
“You’re still not going to have spectators,” Kosienski said about the potential July 6 alternative. “Is this perfect? No. It’s going to be safe, and follow the guidelines by the health department. Once the local health department reviewed everything they said proceed the way you’re going.”
The current plan calls for a 10 a.m. and 1 p.m. procession at both schools with students waiting in their cars until their group is called. Students in caps and gowns and facemasks will walk six-feet apart to the stage to receive their diploma. Graduates may remove their mask to allow a photographer to snap a picture. Speeches from students and administrators will be recorded ahead of time, and mixed into the final video that will also feature photos of the graduates and scenes of the class of 2020 throughout the year.
Parents who brought a student to the procession must remain in their cars and students must leave the property after receiving their diploma. Hand sanitizer will be readily available and only essential staff will be present.
Tuesday’s meeting will be an opportunity to finalize the existing plan or make changes, Kosienski said.
“Ultimately, that could happen,” he said.