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Traditional Commencement Possible at HHS

In an update to the previously reported story regarding individual HHS graduation ceremonies, the Image has learned the R-III District could possibly be holding a traditional commencement ceremony later this summer.
The district sent home a letter last week about individual graduation ceremonies for each senior and seven members of their immediate families.
The individual graduations will take place May 5-8, and will include pictures in cap and gown, of family, and of the graduate receiving their diploma. Everything will be videotaped and added to that of the entire Class of 2020 and sent to the graduates this summer.
Of course, this is all due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the fact that schools are closed for the remainder of the year, and the stay-at-home orders given by the Governor.
This contingency plan was developed to guarantee, in these unprecedented times, that each senior would have the opportunity to have a senior walk and share that moment with their families while staying within the social gathering guidelines during the COVID-19 pandemic.
“In order to not delay your future, we will hold these private ceremonies May 5 through 8,” explained district personnel. “You may sign up for a time for your ceremony at the link provided in the letter.  After signing up for your ceremony, you will receive an email with specific directions and procedures to keep all participants safe during your special occasion.”
In a subsequent letter sent out last Monday, April 20, the district said they were still interested in holding a traditional graduation ceremony, either on June 28 or July 12.
“For the safety of all community members, a traditional ceremony can only be held if all stay-at-home orders and limits for social gatherings are lifted,” said district personnel.
Senior families were asked to fill out a survey stating which date they would prefer, if the district is able to offer a traditional graduation.
The individual ceremonies will still be held and seniors are encouraged to schedule and attend these exercises. If a senior cannot attend on those particular dates, other accommodations may be made. Please call the high school office at 732-5523 to make other arrangements.
The district chose May 5-8 because they wanted to allow seniors an opportunity to proceed with their future plans (online classes, college athletic camps, military boot camps, employment, relocation, internships, union opportunities, etc.) and not be held back by a later date. However, later dates are available if desired by seniors and their family members.
The administrative team at HHS has come up with these alternatives to the regular May graduation because the senior Class of 2020 is important to them and they wanted to offer opportunities for them to celebrate with their families, as well as their classmates, in a safe manner.
“We empathize with the Class of 2020 as they have lost a portion of one of the most important times in their life – their senior year!” said district personnel. “Our desire is to honor them for their accomplishments in the most traditional, safe, and memorable way possible.
“We do realize that the private ceremonies are not traditional; they were designed to be utilized in case social and health conditions limit our ability to provide the seniors with the opportunity that many of us received – an chance to celebrate with their classmates together as one. We sincerely hope to honor the Class of 2020 this summer in a safe and responsible manner.”
If you have any questions, please call Holden High School at (816) 732-5523 or email the district at
Watch the Image for continuing updates on HHS graduation for the Class of 2020.


  1. Connie Wright on April 21, 2020 at 5:58 pm

    Why can’t this be done on the football field?

  2. Nancy Baker on April 22, 2020 at 8:49 am

    Thank you for listening to these young adults and their families. Wish you were not offering a limit of 7 for the private because Seniors were very disappointed over this limit. I think social distancing could be accomplished and a few more added if requested. The number of relatives or friends should not be so restrictive.

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