All of the following is a direct quote from Washington High School Principal Tracy Rose. For reference, the different activities are in bold for easy locating for your convenience.
“Dear Class of 2020,
First, we want to say how thankful we are for each of you. You have endured and will continue to endure a very difficult season in your final year as a student in the Blue Lion Family. We know that you have looked forward to the month of May, 2020, for quite some time. Your class is very special to us, and we were also looking forward to honoring you, celebrating your many accomplishments, and sending you off to light up your corner of the world. However, it seems a worldwide pandemic had other plans.
Over the past 143 years, our commencement exercises have adjusted, moving venues, buildings, and rituals involved. The one thing that has not changed, however, is ensuring that our students are celebrated in a meaningful way.
While the 144th graduation at Washington High School may look a little different than those in the past, we will continue to give your class the proper recognition and honors you have earned while maintaining adherence to the health and safety restrictions currently in place to slow the spread of this nasty virus.
In accordance with the guidance established by Governor DeWine, the Ohio Department of Health, and the Ohio Department of Education on Wednesday, April 29th, Washington High School will hold a special graduation ceremony for the Class of 2020. We are committed to honoring our seniors in a way that honors each student and their family in a safe and responsible way.
We have already begun to celebrate the Class of 2020 by placing yard signs in each senior’s yard, and leading the community-wide “Be The Light” night for our graduating students. We will continue to honor the Seniors with our traditional celebrations, all with a unique flair for this year.
This weekend, we were supposed to be celebrating the Roaring Twenties on the dance floor. While we won’t be dancing the night away together, we will be celebrating at home. Join us on the district Facebook to see the announcement of the prom royalty this Saturday at 7 PM, as well as join us in a virtual prom, whether it be sharing photos in your dress, past prom photos, or how you’re enjoying the night at home with your family, by posting on our social media pages, as well as your own.
On Friday, May 15th, we will hold our traditional Senior Breakfast and Senior Assembly virtually, at 7:00 AM and 8:00 AM as scheduled. Since we cannot gather for a meal in person, the day before our team will be delivering breakfast to all of our seniors across town to be placed in the refrigerator at home and reheat the next day. We invite everyone to wake up and join us on Facebook for the class histories, superlative awards, and a few fun surprises from our staff. More details about the breakfast delivery will be coming soon.
After breakfast, we will roll right into the Senior Assembly at 8:00 AM. We will be joined virtually by the faculty and staff of Washington High School who will recognize our students’ many special accomplishments, followed by the Senior Slideshow.
We invite everyone in our community to get up early, make some breakfast, and join us for this special time of remembering the great times our students have had as Blue Lions, and recognize their achievements.
This will kick off a week of Senior Send Offs, where we will share the submitted pictures and accomplishments of all of our Seniors across our social media platforms.
And finally, here are our detailed plans for our special graduation ceremony:
First, cap and gown pick-up, fee payment, and senior laptop return will be Wednesday, May 13 and Thursday, May 14th, from 9:00 AM until Noon. For computer return, students with the last name A-H will report to the Middle School gym lobby. Students with last name I-Q will report to Liberty Hall, and students with the last name R-Z will report to the High School gym lobby. Those students that need to pick up their cap and gown or settle their account need to see Kylie in the main office.
Next, each senior will have the opportunity to graduate in person in the Washington High School gymnasium. Students will be given a scheduled time slot on one of the following days: May 18, 19, 20, or 21. Seniors may bring up to five guests to join them in this special ceremony, where they will be announced, walk across the graduation platform, and receive their diploma.
Scholarships, awards, flowers and a few more surprises will be distributed during this time.
To ensure that every Senior gets their opportunity to celebrate this momentous occasion with their family in a safe manner, it is imperative that the schedule and guidelines are strictly followed. Specific information for each individual student and their time slot will be emailed to them on Monday.
On Friday, May 22nd, at 7:00 PM, we will come together at home to join our 134th Commencement Exercises on the district’s Facebook page. A video compilation of the ceremony, complete with speeches, music, and all of the regular graduation fanfare will be broadcast during the regularly-scheduled time. We encourage everyone in our community to join us for this special event.
While these plans are different than we had envisioned when you began the school year, these plans allow us to fully celebrate the Class of 2020 while adhering to the mandated social distancing guidelines established by the order of the Governor.
Blue Lions are resilient, and the Class of 2020 has been a leading example of that resiliency throughout this process that the rest of our students and even our staff have found inspiration in. As you go on to “be the light” in your corner of the world, we are confident that you will do great things and continue to make the Blue Lion Family proud.
Our deepest Congratulations and Gratitude to the Washington High School Class of 2020! We look forward to celebrating with you soon.”