As capacities for gatherings increase Superintendent Jeanice Swift is optimistic about an in-person graduation


Julie Heng

Plans for a traditional graduation ceremony for the Class of 2021 is already underway. “We are excited to welcome students and families back to school buildings this spring and remain focused on a strong wrap-up to the 2020-21 school year,” Superintendent Jeanice Swift said.

Allison Mi, Copy Editor

In a newsletter sent by Superintendent Jeanice Swift on March 11, in-person graduation ceremonies for the Class of 2021 are becoming increasingly possible and planning is already set in motion.

At the moment, a traditional graduation ceremony is planned to take place outdoors in the EMU stadium, and an inclement weather plan is also being developed. Though the current participation limits from the MDHHS will affect the number of spectators admitted for the event, Swift still remains hopeful that limits will increase. In addition, each graduate will receive a set number of tickets for family members to attend. There will also be a live-stream of the ceremony to ensure that it will be made accessible to those who are unable to attend in-person.

“As has been true throughout this COVID time, the health and safety of our students, staff and families remain our top priority,” Swift wrote. “We have been diligently working with local authorities, events administration at venues and our school teams to determine how best to plan for the end-of-year celebrations for our students.”

The current tentative dates for the graduation ceremony are as follows: Huron will be on Wednesday, June 2, 6:30 p.m., Pioneer will be on Thursday, June 3, 6:30 p.m., and Skyline will be on Monday, June 7, 6:30 p.m.

Similar to last year, all of the students of the Class of 2021 will be receiving a celebratory yard sign. 

“As we emerge from this COVID pandemic time that has impacted our students and staff families and community in so many challenging ways, we are excited to come together in joy and celebration to honor our impressive graduates of the AAPS Class of 2021,” Swift said. 

More information will be shared with students and families in the next couple of weeks in regards to indoor senior celebrations, like prom, which also proves more complicated due to the limitations on indoor gatherings.

All other events, such as awards ceremonies and other recognitions, will be virtual through the end of the school year. Over the next few weeks, Class of 2021 students and parents can expect regular updates from their school team on graduation and other end-of-year events.

“We are encouraged that this is a time of hope that better days are just ahead,” Swift said.