These York County districts are planning summer graduations, events
Now that York County has moved to the yellow phase of reopening, many school districts are preparing for summer graduations or events in addition to — or instead of — virtual ceremonies.
"As this is an ever-changing situation, we now have the opportunity to provide a more personalized experience," said Red Lion Area Superintendent Scott Deisley in a May 21 board report.
The district had previously announced plans for a virtual ceremony, which were met with much outcry, including 1,200 people signing a petition in protest of the plans.
But now that stay-at-home restrictions have lifted, officials are willing to allow seniors a photo opportunity with diplomas, similar to neighboring districts.
Other districts are also finalizing plans for summer ceremonies or organizing additional events to go along with their virtual recognition amid the relaxed COVID-19 restrictions.
An updated list of districts planning summer events with confirmed dates are listed below. South Eastern, West Shore and York Suburban are also considering summer events, but dates had not been confirmed as of Thursday.
York City, Spring Grove Area and West York Area school districts already held diploma pickup or senior walk events for students in May.
Central York: The district is planning an in-person commencement July 24, with details yet to be announced.
Dallastown Area: Senior ceremonies are scheduled for June 1-5. Each senior will walk across the stage and be photographed with a diploma cover in the presence of four family members. Those ceremonies are voluntary, and will also be livestreamed.
A senior salute with large group and individual recognition is also planned for a time yet to be announced on Aug. 1 if York County has reached the green phase by then.
Dover Area: A morning graduation ceremony is planned for Saturday, July 25, with details yet to be announced.
Eastern York: The district will film seniors walking across the stage to receive a stand-in diploma in the presence of immediate family, who may take photos of the ceremony. This started last week and will continue June 1, 4 and 5.
Real diplomas will be distributed in a drive-by event June 3.
In the event York County is in the green phase or state guidelines permit gatherings of up to 200 people, the district will also hold a summer commencement at 6:30 p.m. Friday, June 26, or a rescheduled date of Friday, July 17.
If neither of those dates are suitable to host a large gathering, a virtual ceremony will be held July 17.
Hanover Public: The district is planning an in-person graduation at the high school stadium at 7 p.m. Friday, Aug. 7, with a rain date of 10 a.m. Saturday, Aug. 8. Each graduate will be permitted to bring two guests, and social distancing will be observed. The event will also be livestreamed.
Northeastern: A diploma photo-op on the high school football field was held Sunday. Immediate family members accompanied students onto the field and watched them receive diplomas onstage.
Northern York County: The district is planning an in-person graduation scheduled for the evening of Friday, July 31, with a rain date of Saturday, Aug. 1, at the football field. If York County is not in the green phase by then, other options will be considered.
Red Lion Area: Students will have the opportunity to pick up diplomas and senior gifts with a photo opportunity June 1, 2 or 3. Details were not given.
The district is also planning an open house for students to meet classmates in person, take a final walk through the school and take pictures in caps and gowns on Friday, June 19, with a backup date of Tuesday, July 21, pending state restrictions.
Southern York County: The district is planning an Aug. 7 graduation ceremony at the high school stadium with limited spectators, A rain date is scheduled for Aug. 8, and the ceremony will also be livestreamed.
If an in-person celebration is not feasible, officials will hold a virtual graduation the same day.
Spring Grove Area: School officials are planning for a commencement ceremony or celebration on Saturday, Aug. 1, if York County reaches the green phase and the state permits large gatherings by Monday, July 27.
More information will be released in July.
York Suburban: The district is planning a diploma photo-op for students on June 1,2 and 29 (a make-up date for family members who were sick or otherwise unable to make the previous event).
Two families will come to the field every five minutes, with up to six family members each to watch their seniors and take photos with diplomas. A brief time will be allowed for additional family photos.