Graduation caps are in the air as Russell County High School prepares for in-person event

Education

RUSSELL COUNTY, Ala. (WRBL) – Seniors at Russell County High School will get to experience a great milestone as the school prepares for a traditional in-person graduation.

Russell County High School officials have worked tirelessly to make sure students are able to have somewhat of a normal school year, especially seniors.

With prom right around the corner, seniors can also think about turning their tassels. Seniors will be able to attend their traditional graduation at RCHS football field. Each student will receive four tickets and the ceremony will take place May 20 at 7 p.m. Senior advisor Samantha Shoup said she and school officials have worked extremely hard to give seniors a ‘normal’ school year.

“I think at first the seniors were hesitant, they didn’t really know how their senior year was going to go,” Shoup said. “They knew that last year seniors didn’t get prom, they didn’t get to finish out their sports season. So, this year I think we worked really hard to make sure that they had as normal as a senior year as possible.”

Seniors last year were able to experience graduation but it took place a month after the original graduation date. Shoup said this is a bitter sweet moment for RCHS class of 2020, they’re happy for their fellow classmates but they’re said part of their senior year was taken from them due to COVID-19.

“I think it makes them sad, they didn’t get to experience those things due to the pandemic, but I know that our seniors this year have really tried to include the seniors from last year. Some of our seniors are taking them to prom this year to make sure they still get the prom experience.”

Even though graduation will be an outdoor event, RCHS will still follow CDC guidelines. Attendees and graduates must wear masks, graduates will be 6 feet apart and families who are in the stands will be 6 feet apart as well.

Shoup told News 3 that in order to make graduation happen on time this year, she and her colleagues had to sit down and brain storm how they could make this special day happen for their seniors.

“We decided that if everybody is wearing a mask and socially distanced and we follow the CDC guidelines then we can just make it happen.”

To celebrate the graduating class seniors will get to have a senior picnic on Apr. 30., the senior picnic will have bouncy houses, hot dogs, burgers and an array of fun activities that day.

“It makes me feel really honored to be the senior advisor and being able to work really hard to get these seniors to have a senior year. I know how important and how special being a senior is and being the older kids of the school, this is something they’ll be able to remember forever.”

Seniors will also have their traditional senior breakfast the morning of graduation practice and school officials are working to get students more than four graduation tickets.

“I think everyone is super excited about it and they’re really grateful that we tried to make sure they had a normal school year.”

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