BRIDGEWATER, NJ - Bridgewater-Raritan High School has a plan for this year's graduation as the Class of 2020 is recognized for being "United Apart."
Principal Charles Ezell released a YouTube video Thursday detailing the plans for June and the intention of the district to hold a graduation ceremony on June 23, as previously planned, just virtually.
"We will have a graduation ceremony on the day and time as originally planned," he said. "But it will look different than it has in previous years."
The week of June 1, Ezell said, seniors will receive their caps and gowns at their homes.
"The week of June 8 will be a week to celebrate you," he said.
First that week, Ezell said, community members are being asked to place signs on windows and on their lawns that say "BRHS. Class of 2020. United Apart."
"While we are apart, we are still united," he said.
From there, Ezell said, while maintaining social distancing guidelines, an administrator will visit the home of each senior, in a bus with a banner celebrating the Class of 2020. The administrator will visit the house with a personalized graduation package that will include a diploma cover, program, keepsake graduation tickets, honor cords, non-monetary awards and a BRHS lawn sign that will be more personalized.
"Students will be able to take photos in front of the bus with the banner," he said. "With permission, the administrator will also snap a photo to create a digital procession that will be used in the commencement ceremony."
From there, Ezell said, the virtual graduation ceremony will be held as planned at 5:30 p.m. June 23. It will be prerecorded, and all names will be read aloud by their peers, with photos shown of each student.
"The ceremony will end with the tossing of caps," Ezell said, "and we will send all seniors a way for them to send clips of themselves throwing their caps in the air."
But that is not the end of the celebration, Ezell said. At 8:20 p.m. that evening, he said, everyone in the community will be asked to come outside and lay on their car horns in support of the Bridgewater-Raritan High School Class of 2020.
"While this will not be what we expected, it will certainly be a great celebration," he said.
Ezell also addressed prom, and said that it will not be happening before July. He said the Class of 2020 has raised considerable money over the last four years, which usually goes toward prom.
At this point, there is a plan to solicit feedback from all seniors about how the money should be disbursed.
"This is a wonderful time in your life," Ezell said. "In spite of what's happening, you can count on us making it special, while keeping you safe."
Watch the video to hear Ezell's full message.