Southern Oregon schools honor 2020 graduates with socially distant walks, drives, and banners

Graduation for the Class of 2020 will be a little different for every district, but schools are doing their best to send seniors off in style.

Posted: May 28, 2020 5:56 PM
Updated: May 28, 2020 6:01 PM

MEDFORD, Ore. — With Governor Kate Brown's announcement in early April that Oregon schools would remained closed into summer due to the coronavirus, the fate of the graduating Class of 2020 — beyond simply gaining a diploma — was thrown into doubt. The accustomed ceremonies immediately became untenable.


RELATED: NewsWatch 12's Class of 2020 Graduation Photo Wall


Since then, each school district has worked to find a way they can honor their graduating seniors with some measure of pomp and circumstance while still adhering to state social distancing guidelines.

Here are some of the plans announced so far by districts across southern Oregon:


St. Mary's School

St. Mary's Class of 2020 got their graduation parade on May 21. Students and parents decorated their vehicles and drove by the school as seniors arrived to receive their caps and gowns, yearbooks, and gifts.

Medford High School (North, South, & Central)

Medford's graduation ceremonies begin on May 29 with the Grad Drive, visiting schools around the district. The drive is followed by diploma walks on May 30 and June 4, and a virtual tribute to seniors streaming on each school's Facebook page. A larger community celebration is still to be announced.

Grants Pass High School

On Wednesday, GPHS held a modified version of its annual Senior Walk as seniors came to pick up their caps and gowns — signing a stretch of sidewalk on the school campus. Graduation is planned for June 26, but the precise plans are still under consideration as administrators try to plan around continued restrictions on gatherings.

Ashland High School

Ashland will honor its seniors on May 29 with a socially distanced parade around the district, with school staff spaced around the parade route to cheer seniors on. Seniors already picked up their caps and gowns earlier in the month. The parade begins at 6:30 p.m.

Eagle Point High School

EPHS delivered signs to every senior for them to display at home. The school is holding a stripped-down version of a traditional graduation ceremony on June 6, with students walking up to a stage to receive their diplomas. There will also be a "reverse parade" in downtown Eagle Point with seniors standing on the sidewalk while cars drive by to congratulate them, followed by fireworks at the stadium.

Rogue River Junior-Senior High School

RRJSHS has a graduation ceremony planned for June 6 at 10 a.m., beginning with a parade procession from Rogue River Center to the school. This is a "drive-in" graduation where students and families will be in vehicles, but graduates will be able to get out and go up to the stage to receive their diplomas. The event will also be livestreamed for the community to see.

Crater High School

Crater High School's graduation is set for June 3, featuring a community parade from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m. and a live broadcast from the football stadium beginning at 8 p.m. The grad ceremony includes live presentations from the the superintendent, school administrators and the Valedictorians — followed by the National Anthem presented by Crater students and then cap and gown pictures of the graduates.

Logos Public Charter School

Logos graduation is set for May 28-29 at the school. About half of the graduating seniors will walk on Thursday and the other half on Friday. Each senior will have time to walk across the stage with their families in attendance.

Glendale High School

The Glendale High School Graduation Parade will be held on June 5. The parade starts at 6:00 p.m. at the high school, travel to the elementary school and then down the main street of Glendale before returning to the high school. The Glendale High School Class of 2020 graduation celebration video will be available for public viewing beginning June 3rd on the district website.


More school graduation plans and stories will be added as NewsWatch 12 receives them.

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CountyCasesDeaths
Multnomah61268858
Washington42807409
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Clackamas33383393
Lane30600364
Jackson25322365
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Umatilla15191184
Linn15044187
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Josephine10414250
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Polk8409104
Benton626040
Malheur594693
Coos5878109
Columbia443156
Jefferson427868
Lincoln369955
Crook346858
Union342857
Wasco321147
Clatsop266835
Baker223434
Tillamook221447
Hood River218937
Morrow199425
Curry194639
Harney122333
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Lake106519
Wallowa76513
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Los Angeles154020027275
San Diego4135824357
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Sacramento1703432467
Kern1593361855
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Contra Costa1048151058
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San Francisco57584676
San Mateo56974631
Monterey53040631
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Santa Barbara47954556
Merced45572675
Sonoma43725414
Placer42858479
Imperial39228778
Kings35628372
San Luis Obispo31844361
Madera26567315
Shasta26397465
Butte25731324
Santa Cruz22609224
Yolo21840263
Marin18796249
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Sutter14710186
Napa13528107
Yuba1087191
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Tehama10339133
Nevada10218105
Mendocino877599
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Tuolumne785191
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