Graduation Returns to Early June

Erin Mulvey ('21), Orbit Contributor

The 2021 RMHS graduation ceremony will look very similar to last year’s outdoor ceremony and is currently planned for June 6th.

This news has come after a year filled with many uncertainties and cancelled events for seniors due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Graduation has been something the Class of 2021 has been looking forward to since they were underclassmen. But, with so many changes throughout this past school year, seniors and their families are wondering what their ceremony will look like. 

Last year, the pandemic resulted in a new ceremony that RMHS had never seen anything like. Instead of an early-June, mid-day ceremony in the Hawkes Field House where all invited friends and family could sit in the stands and observe, the Class of 2020 saw a very different graduation. The late-July ceremony began at 7:00 pm and took place on the field of the football stadium. Students sat with only two friends or family members and were socially distanced from other graduates. 

Principal Kathleen Boynton and administrative assistant Ms. Stacy Scouten are working together to make the graduation as special as possible. They are currently planning it, but nothing is set in stone. Ms. Scouten says, “Everything depends on what the state says, [including] how we can gather. More than likely, it’s going to be outdoors.” 

Ms. Boynton had some more information about the ceremony. She says, “The baseline that we have to work from is what happened last year.” Although it was a challenging and difficult switch to plan a new ceremony, it was still very special for students. Ms. Boynton adds, “Parents could come up and hand the diploma to their children, which was really […] special.” 

“The one thing we weren’t allowed to do, which we might change–but we’ll have to go to the Board of Health […] with a new proposal–is whether or not we can allow guests on the stands,” Ms. Boynton adds. It is unknown at this moment if the Board of Health will be okay with such a change, as it will come with a lot of planning.

Carolyn Narahara (’21) has some hopes for the graduation. She says, “I hope my siblings get to come, but if it is just my parents that’s okay.” Narahara also adds, “I hope to be with my friends and people that I didn’t get to see this year.”  

After an interesting year with a lot of changes and adjustments, the ceremony will hopefully be a way to celebrate the seniors and what they have accomplished throughout the pandemic and their four years at RMHS.