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Coastal Bend high schools make graduation ceremonies happen

Ray High School graduation
Posted at 6:41 PM, May 25, 2020
and last updated 2020-05-25 19:41:07-04

Texas school districts were forced to reevaluate how and if they would hold graduation ceremonies this year because of Covid-19. Many Coastal Bend districts have found a way to hand out diplomas to their seniors face to face.

High school seniors in the Corpus Christi Independent School District are preparing to finally walk the stage. CCISD is taking its graduation ceremonies outside .

“It reminds be of high school musical when everyone graduates outside,“ said Moody High School senior Belize Garcia.

Nine high schools will hold their ceremony at Cabaniss Field on different days. Guests will be limited and seniors and their families will be spaced out 6-feet apart from everyone else.

“I was excited about that and just see everyone again and at least have a grad ceremony," said Garcia.

But while some CCISD students are grateful to even get a physical ceremony instead of a virtual one, some Tuloso-Midway seniors are upset they won’t be able to include all of their loved ones in their big day as the district is only allowing each senior to invite two guests to attend their outdoor graduations.

TMISD is also splitting their graduates into two ceremonies. Students with last names starting with A-H will graduate on Thursday, June 11. Those with last names starting with I - Z will graduate Friday June 12. Both celebrations will be held at Warrior Stadium. Tuloso-Midway high school seniors held a protest this weekend hoping to let district officials know they aren’t happy about the split graduations.

"We just want it to be known that we want them to be a little more considerate of our family being there because through it all they are the ones that have been our number one supporters," said senior London Ayala.

Gregory-Portland ISD is also taking their ceremony outside to the Ray Akins Wildcat Stadium. Families who plan to attend must RSVP with the district and seniors are allowed three guests. Anyone attending the GPISD graduation will have to complete a health screening at the gate, and anyone who doesn’t pass it won’t be allowed to enter the stadium.

Flour Bluff ISD announced it will hold their graduation ceremony on Friday at Hornet Stadium for the first time in 45 years. Each graduate will be allowed two guests.

West Oso ISD graduation is happening this Saturday May 30, at the West Oso High School Football Stadium. School nurses will be doing temperature checks on students and their families as they arrive, and people are encouraged but won’t be required to wear masks. Each West Oso graduate can bring along 4 guests.

While seniors are coping with the remains of their graduation ceremonies, they say they'll find ways to celebrate their big day but mostly begin to move forward.

“I think this is a very humbling experience its really humbling and I think in the future we won’t take anything for granted and we’ll learn to adapt more," said Belize Garcia.

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