NNPS Graduation 2020
High school graduation is a milestone achievement for students, families and staff. It signifies hard work, dedication and perseverance. The Class of 2020 has certainly shown us that despite the challenges presented during the past few months, they are champions. While this school year has been unusual, Newport News Public Schools' commencement festivities will continue the time-honored traditions of celebrating the successes of our graduates.
"This is a special time for our graduates. We are making every effort to accommodate our students and follow the Governor's guidelines," said Dr. George Parker, superintendent of schools. "We are committed to ensuring a safe and memorable graduation ceremony to honor our graduates. We thank our graduates, families and staff for their cooperation."
After gathering input from the Class of 2020 and school leaders, Newport News Public Schools is proud to announce a multi-event plan to commemorate the accomplishments of our graduates, which includes a live graduation ceremony with limited participation by students and family members. Each high school will host a modified commencement ceremony at Todd Stadium the week of June 15, 2020 at the date and time noted.
The commencement ceremonies will feature recorded greetings from the Superintendent, members of the School Board, the School Principal and the Senior Class President, followed by the recorded Valedictorian and Salutatorian addresses. The commencement ceremonies will broadcast, and stream live on NNPS-TV, nnpstv.com, YouTube, ROKU and Apple TV.
Current COVID-19 restrictions limit occupancy in Todd Stadium to 10 persons. To accommodate a graduate's processional into the stadium and across the stage to receive their diploma, seniors will receive an email and postcard with their individual time slot for arrival to ensure social distancing and gathering protocols.
Achievable Dream High School
Friday, June 19 beginning at 10 a.m.
Rain date: Friday, June 26 at 10 a.m.
Denbigh High School
Thursday, June 18 beginning at 10 a.m.
Rain date: Thursday, June 25 at 10 a.m.
Heritage High School
Friday, June 19 beginning at 12 p.m.
Rain date: Friday, June 26 at 12 p.m.
Menchville High School
Monday, June 15 beginning at 10 a.m.
Rain date: Monday, June 22 at 10 a.m.
Warwick High School
Tuesday, June 16 beginning at 10 a.m.
Rain date: Tuesday, June 23 at 10 a.m.
Woodside High School
Wednesday, June 17 beginning at 10 a.m.
Rain date: Wednesday, June 24 at 10 a.m.
Updated June 1, 2020: Graduates and families must arrive in the same vehicle; there is no limit on the number of people in the vehicle, but NNPS emphasizes the importance of proper driver and passenger safety. In particular, the appropriate child safety seats or restraint devices must be used for passengers ages 7 and below for vehicles entering the event. Families in need of special accommodations, including those who may need transportation to and from Todd Stadium, should contact their school principal for assistance.
To ensure that all guests who attend have the opportunity to see their loved one graduate, we have relocated the stage for the commencement ceremony to the front of Todd Stadium. This will enable all guests to remain in their vehicle while the student receives their diploma. As the student nears the stage, the vehicle will proceed to a viewing area where family members may observe the graduate as he/she walks across the stage. The student will return to their vehicle and follow the processional out of the stadium parking lot once they have participated in the ceremony.
NNPS has added a large outdoor screen for better viewing, and audio that may be heard through speakers and a FM radio signal in the vehicle.
A professional photographer will take a picture of each graduate as they walk across the stage. All graduates will receive a free 5"x7" commemorative photo in a folio. In addition, their photo will be available for download for free about two weeks after the graduation ceremony. Guests will not be permitted to exit the vehicle to take pictures.
Senior Spirit Week is June 1-5, 2020
As part of the festivities for the Class of 2020, all high schools will host Senior Spirit Week during the week of June 1-5. Click on your school's logo below to download your Senior Week schedule.
The Senior Spirit Week events are planned in accordance with current social distancing guidelines which limit the number of persons in school facilities to 10 or fewer.
Seniors and staff at each high school have planned celebratory events throughout the week. Activities include scheduled pickups for caps and gowns, cords, hoods and senior t-shirts; virtual recognitions and superlatives; online contests; and virtual celebrations. In addition, yard signs imprinted with each high school's logo and colors will be customized with each graduate's name and will remain on the schools' lawn for Senior Week. Students will be permitted to take their signs home on the day of scheduled pick-up of graduation and senior items.
In a survey administered to seniors the week of April 20, students who responded overwhelmingly indicated a preference for an in-person commencement ceremony and the inclusion of other celebratory events. Given this information, NNPS administrators have considered the best options for the senior class while remaining compliant with the Governor's orders and Centers for Disease Control guidelines.
Should state restrictions or CDC guidelines change prior to the scheduled events, additional information will be released regarding the NNPS graduation ceremonies.