Minnesota bans in-person commencement ceremonies for class of 2020

State recommends virtual, adapted graduations

The+class+of+2019+throws+its+caps+in+the+air+after+graduation+June+6.+Minnesota+Department+of+Health+and+Department+of+Education+announced+May+8+that+large+scale+in-person+graduations+are+prohibited+for+the+class+of+2020+due+to+the+COVID-19+pandemic.

Noah Orloff

The class of 2019 throws its caps in the air after graduation June 6. Minnesota Department of Health and Department of Education announced May 8 that large scale in-person graduations are prohibited for the class of 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Talia Lissauer

This story is updated as of 6 p.m. May 8. 

Park announced in 6425 News May 8 that the in-person Graduation for the class of 2020 set for June 23 will not be happening at the St. Louis Park High School Stadium after receiving the guidance from the state.

“St. Louis Park High School is committed to the June 23 date and will now review the input gathered from students, parents and families – in the context of the new guidance from the Governor – and determine the next best option for graduation. Details will be forthcoming,” according to 6425 News.

With less than four weeks until Park seniors were originally scheduled to graduate, the Minnesota Department of Health and Department of Education have announced that all large scale graduations whether indoor or outside are not permitted for the class of 2020.

 “We know how much students in the class of 2020 have sacrificed this year, and how disappointing it is not to participate in the milestones or traditions they had imagined. These guidelines were made with public health protection in mind, and adhering to them is how we will both celebrate our students and move safely through this challenge together,” the notice said.

Virtual celebrations that require no one to leave their home are highly recommended, however, other celebrations such as car parades and parking lot ceremonies are still permitted, as long as they follow guidelines that are laid out in the notice.

Park also announced there will be a virtual celebration 7:30 June 2 on YouTube to honor the class of 2020. The video will feature speakers including students, school and district leaders and Diane Vig from Dollars for Scholars.

“All seniors will be featured as the audience looks back at their childhood and forward to their plans for the future. High school memories will be shared and achievements, honors, and awards will be acknowledged,” according to 6425 News.

Although curbside pick up is preferred, schools may still choose to deliver graduation materials to students as long as they practice social distancing, wear a mask/gloves and stay outside, according to the notice.