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Graduation 2020: Guidelines & Procedures for Ceremony Bearcat Stadium

RELEASE: MAY 16, 2020

Aledo High School and the Aledo Learning Center are excited to host in-person graduation for the Class of 2020 on Friday, May 29. The ceremony will begin at 10 a.m. and each senior will be given four tickets for guests.

With this opportunity to bring outdoor graduation to Bearcat Stadium, it will also include many state required guidelines and instructions.

Due to social distancing and gathering requirements, both sides of the stadium will be utilized for seating and all graduates will be positioned six feet apart on the field during the ceremony. This year's Class of 2020 includes 428 graduates. Senior student and family participation in graduation is voluntary.

Aledo ISD will provide live-streaming video of the ceremony via YouTube. Please closely review the details of the graduation ceremony and what will be required of seniors and all guests.

Also, Aledo ISD will be providing more details leading up to graduation and the information will be available on the district and high school websites.

Guest Tickets & Distribution
Each senior will be given four printed tickets for guests and this amount does NOT include the senior. This is the maximum amount for each senior, with NO exceptions. Seniors are NOT allowed to have more than four guests and any unused tickets are not allowed to be shared with others. Tickets will be distributed through a pick-up process the week of graduation at Aledo High School. The date, time and process of this event will be shared as details are finalized. This process will be very similar to the cap and gown pickup that was held at AHS a few weeks ago. Note: Aledo Learning Center graduates will pick up tickets and cap and gowns at the ALC on the same date at AHS.

Health Pre-Screening Process for Guests
All persons attending graduation must complete a health screening before being permitted into Bearcat Stadium for the ceremony. A health-symptom screening will be on the back of the four tickets provided to each senior. Each guest must indicate on the questionnaire whether or not they are exhibiting any of the listed symptoms, sign the back of the ticket, and present it for admission to the stadium. All tickets will be available for pick up on a designated day during the week of graduation at Aledo High School. Guests must bring the ticket and present it for admittance at a designated gate entrance to the stadium. Guests will ONLY be allowed into the stadium with a ticket/health screening that has been fully completed and signed. All guests will be required to bring their own facemask AND wear the mask for the duration of the ceremony. Facemasks matching the cap and gown will be provided to graduating seniors. Student facemasks will be required to be worn at all times, but can be removed during the ceremony for pictures. Following CDC guidance, individuals over the age of 65 or with underlying health conditions (listed here) are encouraged to not attend the commencement at the stadium, but will have the ability to watch the event via live-streaming. Heat could be an issue during the event, and those susceptible to warm temperatures and humidity are encouraged to watch from home.

Student & Guest Parking
Aledo ISD will provide a detailed parking map to assist seniors and guests of locations for assigned parking. Gates and parking lots will open at 8:45 a.m. and guests will be required to enter from specific gates corresponding with parking lot locations. Senior students are required to park in the front of Aledo High School (south side) and will walk to four designated staging areas to prepare for the ceremony and will have health screenings at this time.

Staging of Graduates
Aledo High School seniors will report for the graduation ceremony at 7:45 a.m. Friday at Bearcat Stadium. Students are required to park on the south side of Aledo High School (AHS front entrance area parking lot). Students will walk from the parking lot to four designated staging areas before the ceremony. All graduates will have a temperature screening by an Aledo ISD nurse before entering Bearcat Stadium. Once cleared, students will receive guidance by staff for assigned seating on the field positioned six feet apart.

Guest Seating
All guests will have assigned seating in Bearcat Stadium on both the home and visitor sides. Seats are marked in groups of four with distancing requirements. The four tickets for the assigned senior will correspond with the location of the senior seated alphabetically on the field, as much as possible. Guests are not allowed to switch seats and must remain in the designated seat for the duration of the event and will not be allowed on the field following the ceremony. A detailed seating chart will be made available for all seniors and guests prior to graduation.

Nurses & Hand Washing Stations Available
Aledo ISD will have nurses available to assist with screenings of students and any screenings needed at the gates. No individual will be allowed into the stadium with 100 degrees or higher temperature, per Texas Education Agency guidelines. Bearcat Stadium will also have hand-washing stations positioned at each gate for use by senior students and those attending and working graduation. 

Student Masks & Guest Masks
All senior students will be required to wear a facemask during the ceremony. Facemasks will be provided for each graduate and will match cap and gowns. Students will be required to wear facemasks for the entire ceremony, but may remove them for the official graduation photograph after leaving the stage. Attendees must wear facemasks at all times. Guests must bring their own facemasks.

Live-Streaming Video
Aledo ISD is encouraging families to watch graduation online from the comfort of home. Graduation will be live-streamed to YouTube, and Aledo ISD will communicate the link during the week of the event. Bearcat Stadium will utilize multiple video cameras, positioned on the field and stands, to help enhance the viewing experience for families watching online. The video presentation will be the same video stream being projected on the Bearcat Stadium video board. The full graduation video will also be available online after the event.

Aledo High School has contracted with Glamourcraft and it will be the official photographer for the ceremony. Glamourcraft will provide traditional graduation photos for each senior. Only photographers contracted by the high school and Aledo ISD will be permitted on the field for photography.

What's Allowed, What's Not
Backpacks, purses and chair seatbacks will be allowed into the stadium. Umbrellas will NOT be allowed to be used by guests in the stadium.

Exiting Bearcat Stadium
Aledo High School seniors and those attending will be required to adhere to strict exiting procedures following graduation. Seniors and guests will be required to exit designated gates following the event. Guests will not be allowed on the stadium field following the ceremony. Gathering with family, friends and graduates will not be allowed at the stadium or on school property following graduation. A map will be provided before the event that will detail the exiting procedure from the stadium and parking lots.

Bad Weather Plan
If inclement weather prohibits graduation from being held on Friday, May 29 there will be two alternate backup dates. The first backup date is Saturday, May 30 at 10 a.m. and the second is Monday, June 1 at 10 a.m. Aledo ISD officials will closely monitor weather forecasts days before and during the event and will communicate to senior families of any possible alerts or changes.