Polk outlines plan for socially-distanced high school graduations

Polk County High School seniors, mark your calendars. The school district just announced that your graduations are scheduled for June.

Many counties are holding off their graduation ceremonies until July or August because of COVID-19.

Polk school district officials say they feel comfortable with their decision because they are following CDC guidelines.

“The fact that we get as close to a traditional graduation as we can get, I am truly, truly grateful,” said George Jenkins High Senior class president Kailee Fogel, during a virtual interview on Friday.

The ceremonies will be held at Joker Marchant Stadium in Lakeland where the Detroit Tigers play.

The first one will be June 6 and continue through June 20.

Eighty-five hundred seniors from different schools around the county are going to be graduating.

This year's graduations will feature social distancing, unlike years past.

“We really feel good about our gameplan,” said Bob Donahay, head of Lakeland’s Parks and Recreation Department.

Everyone, including the graduates, will be required to wear a mask and have their temperature taken. If someone’s temperature is too high after it is taken a second time, they will not be allowed in.

There will be assigned seats so people can be socially distanced.

The ceremony, which can take traditionally take hours, is going to be shortened to about an hour.

The stadium will be sanitized every night after the events are over.

Despite the inconveniences, Rachel Williams, senior class vice president at Winter Haven High, can’t wait.

“I am still super excited,” she said.

LINK: For a list of graduation dates, go to www.polkschoolsfl.com/graduation