With the ban on gatherings of 10 or more people remaining in place in Georgia through mid-June due to the COVID-19 pandemic ending any hopes of a normal graduation ceremony, the Jackson High School Class of 2020 are filming their virtual graduation this week.

Each senior and their family are given a 10-minute time period during the week to be in the JHS gym, where the senior, in cap and gown, will be filmed having his or her name called and walking up to receive their diploma and turn their tassel. Family members will be sitting to the side and are urged to cheer and applaud when their graduate’s name is called.

The school system is also filming the valedictorian and salutatorian speeches and the scholarship presentations. They will then edit everything together and produce a graduation ceremony on video. It will be released online and every senior will receive a copy.

Midway through the first day of filming on Monday, Butts County Schools Superintendent Dr. Todd Simpson said they had received a lot of positive feedback about the virtual graduation ceremony from families.

And all hope for an actual graduation ceremony is not lost. After a poll of the seniors found that the majority of them still wanted a real ceremony, the school system is looking at a summer date of July 24 for the actual ceremony. More information on this will be posted when it becomes available.

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