Updates: One factor in the decision to change graduation plans is because a member of the Class of 2020 tested positive for COVID-19, according to Darlington’s Facebook page. It adds: “However, we must take seriously the recommendation of the Health Department given the fact that there is an active case of Covid-19 in the class and other students who have been exposed. ”
Media release: On Thursday, Darlington administrators were contacted by the Floyd County Health Department regarding the school’s planned Commencement ceremony. Given the rise of COVID-19 cases locally and the corresponding threat of further community spread, recommendation was given to not proceed with the event. After consultation with the school’s administrative team and members of the Board of Trustees, the decision was made to shift the event to a “drive through” ceremony.
“More than anything we wish to honor this graduating class and award their diplomas, sending them off to college knowing that each of them has the confidence, connections, and compassion they will need to succeed and give back to the greater good,” said Head of School Brent Bell. “The spring of their senior year has been emotionally stressful for each graduate and their parents, and we commend them for giving 100%, 100% of the time.”
Beginning at 8:15 a.m. on Saturday, June 25, graduates and their families will process in their vehicle from the Huffman Athletic Center through the South Gate of campus and around Silver Lake. The student will then exit the vehicle in the Wilcox Hall parking lot and the Upper School Deans will help escort the graduate from the vehicle to a stage that will be set-up by Silver Lake.
Dean of College Guidance Sam Moss will read the graduate’s name, Head of School Brent Bell and Board Chair Bob Hortman will award the graduate their diploma and pose for pictures taken by Darlington’s professional photographer. The driver of the vehicle will then pick up their graduate at the far end of the stage. We ask that all passengers remain in the vehicle.
The presentation of diplomas will be live streamed via Facebook Live on the Darlington School Facebook page. Photographs will be uploaded to the school’s website and will be available for download.
A second Commencement ceremony is currently still scheduled to take place during Alumni Weekend in October for the Class of 2020.
Health of our Community:
- Anyone who has been diagnosed with COVID-19 or has had a positive COVID-19 test in the past 10 days cannot participate in the event.
- Anyone who is experiencing the symptoms of COVID-19 cannot participate in the event.
- Anyone who has been in close contact with anyone diagnosed with COVID-19, close contact is defined as being within 6 feet for more than 15 minutes with a person, or having direct contact with infectious fluids from a person with confirmed COVID-19 (for example being coughed or sneezed on) cannot participate in the event.