Concerns about large-scale events amid the coronavirus pandemic have triggered the cancellation or rescheduling of numerous school-related activities across Texas. Superintendent Greg Smith and high school principals announced the schedule change in a May 15 livestream.
Although district officials did inquire about opening the roof at NRG, they were told this would not be possible due to the Texas summer heat, Smith said May 15.
At a May 11 board of trustees workshop, when the revised guidelines for holding and conducting commencement ceremonies were released, the district responded by asking for feedback from students, families and staff. CCISD graduates and families chose between a completely virtual ceremony or an outdoor ceremony with the appropriate restrictions, Smith said at the workshop.
“Overwhelmingly you said, 'Let’s do this, and let’s graduate our students in our own backyard,'” he said on the May 15 livestream.
Ceremonies will take place at the district’s Challenger Columbia Stadium, starting at either 8:30 a.m. or 8:30 p.m. depending on school, between May 29 and June 2. June 3 and 4 are planned as rain dates. All ceremonies will also be livestreamed.
The schedule of ceremonies is as follows:
- May 29: Clear Lake High School at 8:30 p.m.
- May 30: Clear Creek High School at 8:30 p.m. AND Clear View High School at 8:30 a.m.
- May 31: Clear Falls High School at 8:30 p.m.
- June 1: Clear Springs High School at 8:30 p.m. AND Clear Horizons Early College High School at 8:30 a.m.
- June 2: Clear Brook High School at 8:30 p.m.
Graduates are limited to four guests each, which is based on a 25% capacity rule for outdoor ceremonies, officials said. The district will be enforcing the use of face masks and social distancing protocol for both graduates and spectators. Families will be seated in quadrants closest to their graduate, officials said May 15.
There will not be graduation rehearsals, per state guidelines, but more information is coming soon about ceremony logistics. Smith called the class of 2020 “the most flexible and resilient group of graduates to date.”
Administrators asked the CCISD community to bring “a smile and some patience—and remember your masks” for the upcoming celebrations.
Families can find up-to-date information about the latest 2020 graduation plan updates at this page.
Editor's note: This story was updated at 4 p.m. May 18 to include a schedule of ceremonies.