CEDAR GROVE, NJ - With the closure of schools through the end of the academic year due to the COVID-19 crisis and a "stay at home" order still in place, the Cedar Grove school district announced last week that it would be formulating a virtual plan for the fourth grade promotion and eighth grade and high school graduation ceremonies.  Not surprisingly, the news was met with disappointment and frustration from parents and students alike with many taking to social media to voice their opinions.  

On Wednesday Superintendent Michael Fetherman sent a letter to parents and guardians regarding the plans, noting that while the virtual ceremonies/celebrations are being planned, the district remains hopeful and committed to giving the students an in-person ceremony if and when the state's rules allow, and following health and safety measures deemed necessary by the state.  

Information on the virtual plans is being shared with students and parents via email.  

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The letter stated:

Dear Parent/Guardian, 

We recognize your disappointment with our recent announcement that promotion and graduation ceremonies will be held in virtual format. Please know that, along with providing our graduates in grades 4, 8 and 12 with a customized virtual ceremony, we have always been, and still are, optimistic we can provide students and their families with an "in-person" diploma distribution ceremony. Guidelines and restrictions from State and local leaders continue to evolve and we remain hopeful that each of our graduates will still get their well-deserved moment in the sun, albeit differently than each of us had originally planned. 

The Cedar Grove Board of Education, district administration and staff will continue to develop ideas and create plans to recognize our graduates and bring closure to their time within their respective schools. Such plans are in addition to our virtual graduation ceremonies currently in production. It is with remaining hope that we can acknowledge our graduates in a more personal, yet appropriately staged, setting at some point in the not-too-distant future, the parameters of which will be dictated by relevant social distancing guidelines. 

TAPinto Verona/Cedar Grove  is an online newspaper serving the Townships of Verona and Cedar Grove. TAPinto Verona/Cedar Grove is accredited by the New Jersey Press Association, and is a locally owned news organization serving the community.

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