Mahoning County Dept. of Health gives schools options for graduation ceremonies

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The Mahoning County Department of Health has approved three different plans for graduation

Graduation, Diploma

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YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio (WKBN) – The Mahoning County Department of Health has approved three different plans for graduation ceremonies for the Class of 2020 in Mahoning County.

All districts are asked to adhere to one of the following three plans, per the Health Commissioner:

  1. Virtual ceremonies. These are recommended by the Ohio Department of Health, the Ohio Department of Education and the Mahoning County Public Health Department. 

2. Drive-thru graduation options, with several different variations: 

  • One option would include immediate household family members remaining in the vehicle and the graduate receiving a diploma through the car window. 
  • A second option would include immediate household family members remaining in their vehicles, while the graduate exits as he or she is called to receive their diploma. 
  • A third option would include the format of a “drive-in” theater having one car per graduate. Immediate household family members park in a designated, secured, and controlled location in the manner of a drive-in theater (parking lot).  Families are not permitted to exit their vehicles except for less than 10 people in intervals to confer a diploma and conform to the orders of social gatherings and distancing. This method is preferred over option 3 (below).
  • A fourth option is that the district board of education hand-deliver diplomas to graduates’ homes and leave diplomas in a safe location for students to pick up. Board will move 6 feet away from diplomas/students and no hand delivery will occur.  Family members will stay close to home.
  1. Single family in-person graduations could be held, but require structured preventative measures to ensure the safety of everyone involved. 
  • Strict interval scheduling
  • Limits of no more than 10 people (including family and administrators in the building at the same time)
  • Disinfecting of door handles and high touch surfaces in between each family
  • Strict parking to prevent congregating in the parking lots

No more than ten people should be gathered at each drive-thru or in-person ceremony at any one time.

Police will be asked to control traffic at drive-thru events.

As an additional reminder, masks are required for all school personnel and are recommended to be worn at any in-person event. 

No handing off of diplomas will be permitted.

Additional information can be found on the Mahoning County Public Health website, as well as the Mahoning County Educational Service Center website. 

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