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UPDATED INFORMATION: Class of 2020 Guide to Commencement at Evans Towne Center Park

 

 

Commencement ceremonies for the Class of 2020 will take place Friday, May 29, and Saturday, May 30, 2020, at Evans Towne Center Park in Evans, GA.

The times and dates for commencement are as follows:

  • Harlem High School – 4:30 p.m., Friday, May 29, 2020
  • Greenbrier High School – 7:30 p.m., Friday, May 29, 2020
  • Grovetown High – 9:30 a.m. Saturday, May 30, 2020
  • Lakeside High – 1:00 p.m., Saturday, May 30, 2020
  • Evans High – 4:30 p.m., Saturday, May 30, 2020

Tickets

A limit of no more than four family and friends for each graduate will be admitted. Tickets have been distributed and are required for entry. If a graduate has not picked up tickets, please contact your school's principal immediately via email:

Rain dates: Sunday, May 31, 2020 and Monday, June 1, 2020

We will make every attempt to hold ceremonies as planned. Due to the unpredictability of inclement weather, decisions regarding postponements or delays will be made as close as possible to the planned start time of each ceremony. 
 
Graduates and their families are encouraged to stay tuned to www.ccboe.net and social media sites for updates. Messages will also be sent via the Edlio call messaging system. 
 
Parents are also welcome to download the School Messenger App by Edlio. The app will give parents the option to receive push notifications from one or more schools and the Columbia County School District. 
 
Ceremonies will be rescheduled to the Rain Dates listed above on times in the order they are canceled. For example, the first ceremony to be canceled would take place: Sunday at 9:00 a.m.; the second to cancel Sunday at 1:00 p.m.; the third to cancel Sunday at 4:30 p.m.; the fourth to cancel Sunday at 8:00 p.m.; the fifth to cancel Monday at 4:30 p.m. And in the event a Sunday ceremony needs to be further postponed it will take place Monday at 8:00 p.m.
 
If needed, updates will be posted as information becomes available.  
 

Commencement will take place under the following conditions:

  • A limit of no more than four family and friends in attendance for each graduate.
  • Tickets are required for entry.
  • Face coverings required for individuals entering and exiting the site.
  • Social distancing at least six feet by group.
  • Attendees will need to bring their own seats.
  • For those who are at added risk or who feel uncomfortable attending, a livestream of each ceremony will be available at http://bit.ly/ccsdlive

The change in venue was made in response to increased audience restrictions and facility cleaning requirements made by the James Brown Arena administration due to ongoing COVID-19 threats to public safety. Some of those requirements include the following: 

  • Limited seating capacity at 1244, which would give 311 graduates 4 tickets each. Four of our five high schools have graduating classes far larger, so the number would have dropped to two at some schools, three at others.
  • They suggested that we split the graduations into two parts, which would have caused us to have to have graduation on additional days, changing the schedule for our graduates and their families. They offered up a Sunday or Monday.
  • Because of the type of venue JBA is, they reminded us that they are still under the restriction of no more than ten people at events, and there was no guarantee that would change.
  • Cleaning the stadium between each ceremony would be required because of COVID19, and the manpower on their end would have to  be greatly increased because of multiple events occurring on the same day. This would cause us to bring in more housekeepers to complete a full building clean between each event.

They were going to require assigned seats, tickets for those seats, ticket takers at the doors, and ushers to get parents and family to their assigned seats. Also, they were requiring added security at each entrance to speed up the ingress. This process would greatly impact the ability to have more than two ceremonies on a given day and parking and traffic difficulties in and out of the arena would have been exacerbated.

“We are grateful to Columbia County for working with us to create a memorable experience for our graduates right here in our own community. Holding commencement at Lady A is a local option for us to safely accommodate family and friends. We regret any difficulties this change causes for our families and we look forward to these days of celebrating,” said Dr. Sandra Carraway, Superintendent of Schools.