Good afternoon, this is Dave McMahon, Principal of Crestwood High School, with an important update about our graduation ceremony plan for the class of 2020.
As you know, our work to bring a memorable graduation event has been ongoing and evolving with every change in announcement made by various officials associated with the current pandemic. Most recently, on April 29, Governor DeWine, the Ohio Department of Education, and the Ohio Board of Health officials released a set of guidelines for graduation, leaving all schools in Ohio scrambling to produce a virtual graduation and have it ready by the school's original graduation date. (Schools are no longer permitted to reschedule graduations for a later date, which was our original plan. And, schools are not permitted to conduct face-to-face graduations at any time this summer, including in football stadiums.)
Fortunately, we moved fast when the latest announcement was made. We were not interested in simply creating a virtual graduation video; our desire was, and is, to include the virtual component within an event that would bring us all together to the extent that social distancing guidelines would permit. We have secured the venue for our graduation, a videographer, photographer, digital media specialist and large host of support personnel who have all come together quickly to bring meaningful memories to our seniors’ graduation. As a result, we are under a massive time crunch to get all elements of the "virtual" graduation filmed so the videographer and digital media specialist have ample editing/production time.
The portion of the virtual graduation focused upon the filming of seniors walking across our stage will begin on Wednesday, May 6, 2020 per the schedule shared today by Mrs. Cutlip. Please assure that you arrive at CHS according to this schedule. Parents are welcome to attend to see your senior walk across the stage, but we must limit those in attendance; we have specific staging in place in order to assure that we are complying with social distancing guidelines.
On Wednesday, June 3, 2020 Crestwood High School will celebrate our commencement at Midway Drive-In in Kent/Ravenna (2736 State Route 59). Gates will open at 7:00 PM and commencement will begin at 8:00 PM featuring a procession of vehicles containing our seniors and their families. Each graduate will be given two vehicle admission tickets; there is no limit to the number of people who attend- they must simply be able to fit in the two vehicles and remain in their vehicle at all times. Please note that, due to space availability, the vehicle containing the senior will be assigned a spot in the front lot, while the second vehicle will be assigned a spot in the rear lot, facing the rear big screen. We encourage you to decorate your vehicle to show your pride in your graduate, and open windows/sunroof are certainly permitted! Out of courtesy of those attending, no large limos/RV’s/small busses are permitted, as these vehicles would obstruct the view of others. The virtual graduation will be shown on the big screen at 9:20 PM followed by a movie chosen by our senior class for those who choose to remain to watch. Additionally, we are working on the possibility of live-streaming the event (more about this will be provided in the future). As we have done in the past, a no-cost copy of the entire ceremony will be provided to each graduate.
I understand that this may be difficult for many of us (me included) to be faced with the need to celebrate such an important milestone in our kid’s lives in a very non-traditional way. Please join me in a positive spirit, making the best that we can of a very difficult, unfortunate situation. Our graduates deserve the best that we can provide.
THANK YOU to the many parents and community members who are working with us to bring as many special memories as possible to our seniors. As always, please stay tuned for more information related to details associated with graduation, as well as additional planned events focused upon celebrating the class of 2020!
Crestwood High School, Principal