Hapnot unveils socially distanced grad ceremony plan

In-person classes may have already been cancelled for Hapnot Collegiate students, but one tradition will remain. Hapnot Collegiate unveiled plans for a new kind of graduation ceremony.

A tentative plan for a different type of grad ceremony was released by the school June 1. The typical ceremony for graduating Grade 12 students has been shoved aside due to COVID-19, but restrictions for public health won’t keep Flin Flon’s newest high school crop from being celebrated for their accomplishments.

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The celebration will start with the car parade and float ceremony, June 24 starting at Hapnot Collegiate at 11 a.m.

All participants on floats will need to observe social distancing and keep a two metre distance from other participants, but otherwise the celebration is likely to go ahead as usual.

Then comes something the school is calling a “reverse grad parade” - instead of bringing the grads to large crowds of onlookers, the school will bring the onlookers to them.

“We will select a street, request homeowner’s permission and have all grads in their formal wear line up along the sidewalk while maintaining a minimum two metre spacing,” reads the tentative grad plan from Hapnot.

“The public can drive along the street and see all of the grads.”

Following the reverse grad parade, all graduating students will be recognized in a series of diploma presentations June 25 and 26. Each graduating student, along with family and friends - up to 19 in total - can book an appointment to come to the Hapnot gym and receive their diploma, any bursaries and receive a toast from school staff and teachers. The ceremony will be streamed on Facebook Live. Grads are asked to attend in cap and gown.

The ceremony itself will be operated with tight precision. The gym will have clearly marked entrances and exits - anyone with flu-like symptoms is told to stay home. 

A staging area will be made in Hapnot’s main lobby area for students to prepare for the ceremony, with the graduate’s entourage allowed to come in only at a designated time. Following the ceremony, grads will exit the area by the south gym doors near the equipment room, then can pose for additional family photos in the southern portion of the school’s lobby. 

“Appointment booking times are pending. We will circulate a list and accept phone appointment bookings,” reads the plan.

The fourth step of the grad ceremony, the annual Safe Grad party, will be offered at a later date, yet to be determined but likely held once population limits on mass gatherings are lifted. The normal grand march is also slated to be held for graduating students at a future date.


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