Madison City Schools makes changes to allow students to graduate together

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MADISON, Ala. — After a challenging school year, The Madison City School District is looking forward to providing a return to normalcy for its graduating seniors next month. The school district said due to COVID-19 capacity limitations at the Von Braun Center, they were initially planning to split up the graduating class ceremonies, but then students weighed in.

“They overwhelming said that graduating together was important to them, and so we started with that as the primary focus on our plans for graduation, to is to give them that wish first,” said Ed Nichols, Madison City Schools Superintendent.

Nichols said his team quickly went back to the drawing board.

“We started out by knowing if that was the parameter it was going to be a challenge in our own stadium, due to seating and the amount of people, it was going to be a challenge of course at the Von Braun, so we turned to the stadium at Alabama A&M University.”

The district settled on the University’s Louis Crews Stadium as a new venue for this year’s graduating classes.

“They are very appreciative. First of all they they were glad that we asked, because it’s their graduation you know it’s not our, not my graduation,” said Nichols.

During the ceremonies for James Clemens High School and Bob Jones High School, students will be provided eight tickets each, and families will be asked to try to socially distance.

“We are very blessed right now that the infection rate is 4 to 5 percent in the community and that we’re not seeing what we saw in January. You know if we were dealing with the infection rate and things that were going on in January, now that would be a different story,” said Nichols.

The Madison City School District said it plans to keep a close eye on whether or not the Von Braun Center decides to lift it’s COVID-19 seating capacity restrictions.
If the center decides to do so, the school district said it would move its graduation ceremonies there instead.

Graduation ceremonies for the district are currently scheduled for May 17, with a rain date of May 18.

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