Georgia high school seniors demand a ‘real’ graduation ceremony

Accomplishment ceremony education graduation

Joining a national trend, Georgia high school seniors are petitioning their local school systems for a real graduation ceremony once coronavirus restrictions have been lifted and gathering in large groups is allowed again.

According to online petition site Change.org, more than 500 petitions from across the country have been started by students and parents, whose dreams of walking the stage, or watching their child wearing a cap and gown at a commencement ceremony, have been dashed by the coronavirus crisis.

In Georgia, four petitions have been started by local students and parents calling on their schools to host in-person graduations later in the year. The petitions are from students at North Hall High School, Cherokee Bluff High School, Gwinnett County Schools and Gilmer High School. You can see the petitions and number of signers below.


Schools throughout the nation have been forced to rethink the tradition, which would bring hundreds or even thousands of people close together, in a time when social distancing and shelter-in-place orders have been issued to curb the spread of the deadly virus.

Why it Matters: The alternative of holding virtual commencements via video conferencing software, like Zoom, has been met by strong pushback, with a movement of more than 550,000 signers demanding an opportunity to have the event in-person at a later stage, when restrictions on gatherings have been lifted.

“The biggest trend on Change.org right now is being led by hundreds of students, urging high school and colleges to reschedule or postpone graduations canceled by COVID-19,” said Michael Jones, Managing Director of Campaigns. “There are petitions from almost every state, signed by thousands of students who don’t want their senior years to disappear without some kind of recognition.”

SENIORS: WE WANT TO HEAR FROM YOU?: Would you like your school to reschedule a real in-person graduation once COVID-19 restrictions have been lifted? Let us know by clicking here.

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