Bixby High School Holds 2020 Commencement


After careful consideration of multiple scenarios for conducting the Bixby High School Class of 2020 commencement, the district moved forward with a modified traditional event at Spartan Stadium on Saturday, June 13. The original graduation, which had been rescheduled for June 27 at ORU’s Mabee Center, was canceled. 
To allow for family participation in this once-in-a-lifetime event, the commencement contained three consecutive events, each including one-third of the BHS graduating class. By hosting the event outside and staggering the graduation ceremonies, the school had adequate space to provide a safe distance between students and guests while complying with all OKSDE (Oklahoma State Department of Education) and CDC guidelines related to the COVID-19 pandemic. These considerations enhanced the safety of all participants by limiting direct exposure between guests outside of immediate families.
The three ceremonies were conducted at 1 pm, 4 pm, and 7 pm. Each senior was allowed to invite up to 10 guests to attend their ceremony. The ceremonies were also broadcast live to enable viewing by friends and family members who were unable to attend the event and/or belong to a vulnerable population. 
For the event, students and BHS staff members were seated on the field, with guests seated on either side of the stadium. The majority of each ceremony was live, yet some portions were pre-recorded and played via video screen on the field. 
Bixby High School administrators met with teachers and student leaders before the event to coordinate details and finalize logistics. Other senior class activities such as prom and Gradfest are still being evaluated, yet may have to be postponed or canceled due to safety considerations. 
While this final plan was not ideal, it allowed BHS seniors to have a traditional ceremony and walk across a stage to receive their diploma. Moving the event up by two weeks also permitted participation by more BHS students, as a late June or July graduation would have excluded some graduates who are entering the Armed Forces or otherwise unable to participate. Finally, it also had the benefit of bringing students together to celebrate this important milestone at their home stadium – a place of pride for many Spartan students.
The leadership of Bixby High School would like to thank the students and families for their patience and understanding during this difficult time. The Class of 2020 is an exemplary group of students who have achieved much success during their time at BHS. The administration is immensely proud of these students and appreciated giving them a meaningful and memorable graduation ceremony they so richly deserved.