Ahead of the district’s in-person graduation ceremonies planned for June 12-14, Spring ISD issued additional requirements for both attendees and participants May 27.
To maintain social distancing during the ceremonies, graduates of Dekaney, Spring and Westfield high schools will each receive two tickets for family members who wish to attend; graduates of Spring Early College Academy and Carl Wunsche Sr. High School will each receive more than two tickets as they have smaller class sizes.
According to the news release, the gates at Planet Ford Stadium will open to guests at 6 a.m. for morning ceremonies and at 5 p.m. for evening ceremonies.
In addition to previously announced safety protocols, the following requirements will also be in place during each in-person ceremony:
- Bags, regardless of size, will be prohibited unless required for health reasons; under these circumstances, a small clear bag must be used.
- Graduates are only allowed to wear flat shoes; no heels are permitted.
- Masks will be provided for graduates, and they will be expected to wear them throughout the ceremony.
- Only three people will be allowed in each restroom, and each stall will be sanitized by staff before the next person can enter.
- Graduates will be seated on the field in socially distanced rows. When the graduate’s name is called, he or she will approach and walk across the stage, pick up the diploma that is placed on the table and participate in a photo opportunity upon exiting.
- Graduates will be released from the field first and will meet their families at their cars.
- Attendees will stay seated until they are dismissed by an usher.
For more information, click here.
Updated May 13 at 11:25 a.m.
Spring ISD will be implementing a number of safety and health precautions to help curb the spread of coronavirus during its in-person outdoor graduation ceremonies planned for June 12-14.
SISD Chief Operations Officer Mark Miranda presented the district's graduation protocol to the district's board of trustees at its regular meeting May 12. In accordance with TEA guidance, the following regulations will be implemented for each of the in-person graduation ceremonies:
- There will be no graduation rehearsals.
- School employees will be limited to the number needed to support each ceremony.
- Each graduate will receive a limited number of tickets for guests, which will be dependent upon the number of graduates at each ceremony.
- All employees, students and visitors will be asked to wear face coverings over their nose and mouth.
- Prior to the ceremony, all students and guests will be screened for signs or symptoms of COVID-19, and those found with signs or symptoms will be excluded from the event.
- Hand sanitizer will be available at all venue entrances.
- Excluding members of the same household, all graduates and guests will be kept 6 feet apart, and stadium seating will be marked for social distancing.
- There will be no processional as graduates will be seated prior to the beginning of the ceremony.
- Public announcements will be utilized during the event to communicate social distancing requirements and provide logistical information before, during and after the graduation.
- Diplomas will not be handed from person to person.
- The stadium will be sanitized and thoroughly cleaned after each graduation.
- Each ceremony will be livestreamed for those who cannot be in attendance.
To maintain social distancing, while Planet Ford Stadium seats about 8,000, Miranda said 1,500 seats will be filled during each graduation ceremony. Miranda added if inclement weather interrupts the in-person graduation ceremony schedule, ceremonies may be rescheduled to June 15 or June 16.
Additionally, while both the virtual and in-person ceremonies will include the singing of the National Anthem and recitation of the pledges, a welcome from each school's principal, board president remarks and the superintendent's address, the virtual ceremonies will also include a dignitary address, salutatorian and valedictorian addresses, and a slide deck roll call. The in-person graduation ceremonies will include a diploma presentation, farewell addresses from each school's senior class president and the singing of the school song.
For more information about SISD's virtual and in-person outdoor graduation ceremonies, click here.
Updated May 11 at 11:54 a.m.
Following Texas Education Agency-issued guidance allowing for in-person outdoor graduation ceremonies to take place in June, Spring ISD has announced that it will be hosting both in-person graduation ceremonies and virtual graduation ceremonies to commemorate the class of 2020.
The following outdoor graduation ceremonies will take place at the district's Planet Ford Stadium in June:
- Spring High School: June 12 at 7 p.m.
- Carl Wunsche Sr. High School: June 13 at 8 a.m.
- Dekaney High School: June 13 at 7 p.m.
- Spring Early College Academy: June 14 at 8 a.m.
- Westfield High School: June 14 at 7 p.m.
Additionally, as some graduates and their families may choose not to take part in the optional in-person ceremonies due to health concerns related to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, the district will also hold virtual graduation ceremonies on June 6, as previously announced. The virtual commencement schedule is as follows:
- Dekaney High School: June 6 at 9 a.m.
- Spring Early College Academy: June 6 at 11:30 a.m.
- Westfield High School: June 6 at 2 p.m.
- Spring High School: June 6 at 4:30 p.m.
- Wunsche Senior High School: June 6 at 7 p.m.
According to the district's announcement, SISD Superintendent Rodney Watson will confer diplomas during the June 6 virtual ceremonies, which will also include valedictorian and salutatorian remarks.
"It's our hope that these two ceremonies—one virtual and one in-person—will ensure that all class of 2020 graduates and their families have the opportunity to celebrate this important milestone," Watson said in a statement. "By moving the in-person ceremonies from July to June, we also feel that more students will be able to take part without interrupting summer plans."
Additional information about the ceremonies is forthcoming. For more information about SISD's class of 2020, click here.
Updated May 6 at 10:53 a.m.
Following new graduation ceremony guidance provided by Texas Education Agency Commissioner Mike Morath on May 5, Spring ISD officials said they are now considering holding in-person graduation ceremonies sooner than late July as previously planned.
According to the new guidance, while completely virtual ceremonies are approved to take place any time, hybrid ceremonies and vehicle ceremonies are permitted to take place beginning May 15. Additionally, between May 15-30, outdoor ceremonies may take place in rural counties followed by all Texas counties starting June 1.
"Graduation ceremonies mark a major milestone for students and their families," Morath said in a statement. "All educators are committed first and foremost to ensuring the health and safety of our students, families, and staff. By taking the necessary precautions developed by medical experts, we can ensure we appropriately honor our class of 2020 graduates while keeping everyone safe."
In a May 6 announcement, SISD officials said they are reviewing the logistics of holding an outdoor graduation ceremony at the district's Planet Ford Stadium in June. According to the announcement, the ceremony would include seating arrangements that would allow family units to sit together while following social distancing protocol.
While district officials have not yet announced a new graduation ceremony schedule, graduating seniors can begin picking up their cap and gowns this week in accordance with the following schedule:
- Spring Early College Academy: May 6 from 4-7 p.m.
- Carl Wunsche Senior High School: May 6 from 4-7 p.m.
- Dekaney High School: May 7 from 4-7 p.m.
- Spring High School: May 8 from 4-7 p.m.
- Westfield High School: May 9 from 4-7 p.m.
Additionally, the announcement states that each of the five high schools will be sending additional information to parents and students via email in the coming days. To share questions or concerns regarding the change in graduation plans, click here.
Posted April 15 at 2:17 p.m.
Spring ISD’s class of 2020 can look forward to participating in virtual and in-person graduation ceremonies to celebrate their achievements this summer.
SISD Superintendent Rodney Watson outlined the district’s plans to host both virtual and in-person ceremonies during the April 14 board of trustees meeting. The recommendation was brought forth by SISD’s Class of 2020 Committee, which is made up of SISD staff, seniors and their parents, Watson added.
“I think this recommendation that came forth from our committee will be able to make all the individuals happy by having a face-to-face graduation [and] having the virtual graduation as well as imparting all the graduates on the day they were supposed to have their graduation ceremony anyway.”
All virtual graduation ceremonies will take place Saturday, June 6. The tentative schedule is as follows.
- Dekaney High School: 9 a.m.
- Spring Early College Academy: 11:30 a.m.
- Westfield High School: 2 p.m.
- Spring High School: 4:30 p.m.
- Wunsche Senior High School: 7 p.m.
All in-person graduation ceremonies will take place at Spring ISD’s Planet Ford Stadium, located at 23802 Cypresswood Drive, Spring, at 7 p.m. The tentative schedule is as follows.
- Monday, July 27: Dekaney High School
- Tuesday, July 28: Spring Early College Academy
- Wednesday, July 29: Westfield High School
- Thursday, July 30: Spring High School
- Friday, July 31: Wunsche Senior High School
Watson said the virtual graduation ceremony will include a valedictorian welcome; speeches from each school’s principal, Watson and SISD Board President Rhonda Newhouse; a roll call of all the graduates; and a salutatorian farewell.
Additionally, while SISD traditionally holds an August graduation for seniors in summer school, Watson said the new schedule will allow those students to participate in the in-person graduation ceremony with their peers in July, eliminating the need for an August graduation ceremony.
In addition to graduation plans, Watson also updated the board on progress with the district’s ongoing curbside meal distribution program as well as its Chromebook distribution.
As of April 14, Watson said, the district had served 98,731 meals.
“Every day, our meal distribution is going up. This week, we served over 13,000 meals, which lets you know that this is a need in our community, and thanks to y'all’s support, we are able to provide that for our families."
For more information about SISD’s curbside meal distribution program, click here.
Additionally, SISD began distributing Chromebooks to high school students last week, April 6-10, and to middle school students this week, April 13-17. Watson said SISD distributed 3,087 Chromebooks to high school students and 3,474 middle school students, leaving enough to begin distribution at the elementary level starting next week.
“Because of the number of Chromebooks that we have and based upon the number that parents picked up, we are able to go down to fourth and fifth grade next week,” Watson said. “So we’re really happy that we’re able to go down to our elementary level to meet students' needs as well.”
For more information about SISD’s Chromebook distribution, click here.