The most recent information related to COVID-19 in San Bernardino County has completely hindered the hope of having a regular graduation ceremony for Redlands Unified.
With more than 3,000 confirmed cases in the county and more than 150 deaths reported, the impact of COVID-19 has been deeply felt in the community.
“Based on the fear of creating an inadvertent chain of transmission amongst students, staff members and community, the decision was made to cancel traditional graduations,” said the district in a press release.
The district and the high school principals are working to implement a virtual graduation ceremony for each of the high schools.
The district's intent was to be able to carry on the Redlands Bowl tradition with the class of 2020, but it also had to balance the needs of students who have firm commitments beyond graduation.
A continued postponement meant that students who have future commitments might not be able to participate in a commencement ceremony at a later date.
With this condensed period, it was vital for the district to begin preparing for a virtual graduation ceremony.
The high school principals and support staff are working diligently to put together a special and unique virtual ceremony, which will include many of the graduation traditions with the use of 21st-century elements. Each high school will be reaching out to their students to request or confirm information to include as part of the event.
Based on the newest guideline and recommendation from the San Bernardino County Department of Public Health and Board of Supervisors, Redlands Unified will host drive-thru celebrations in addition to the planned virtual graduation ceremonies for students.
The district has committed to commemorating its graduating class of 2020 in unique and memorable ways, including the purchase of yearbooks, the professional production of a virtual ceremony and a drive-thru celebration.
The drive-thru model was one of the many formats originally considered by the district. After receiving genuine concerns and feedback from families, the desire for a drive-thru ceremony for students was clearly expressed.
Prior to the new health order announced, the district consulted Erin Gustafson, an acting county health officer. She shared how best to conduct this celebration in the safest manner possible.
With the restrictions lifted to allow for this occasion and guidance and support from the county, the board of education and superintendent determined that it was safe to proceed with planning a drive-thru event.
Information regarding times, dates, locations and expectations will be shared once they have been finalized.
Livestream graduation ceremonies
- Orangewood High School: 5 p.m., Tuesday, June 23.
- Citrus Valley High School: 7 p.m., Tuesday, June 23.
- Redlands eAcademy: 5 p.m., Wednesday, June 24.
- Redlands East Valley High School: 7 p.m., Wednesday, June 24.
- Redlands Adult School: 5 p.m., Thursday, June 25.
- Redlands High School: 7 p.m., Thursday, June 25.
- Links to the ceremonies will be posted on the district website and on each school’s website.