Members of Class of 2020 Receive Their Diplomas — Social Distancing Style

A Watertown high School senior smiles for photos after getting his diploma during a unique graduation ceremony for the Class of 2020, standing next to WHS Principal Shirley Lundberg. Watertown High School’s seniors claimed their diplomas in person at Victory Field on Saturday, but that was about all that was normal about graduation day for the Class of 2020. The atmosphere around Victory Field because the frenzy of activity was just spread out throughout the day as Watertown Public School officials put on a socially distanced ceremony to comply with the state’s COVID-19 guidelines. Each half hour a set of cars pulled up, the graduate stepped out and walked up to a small stage where Principal Shirley Lundberg waited with a diploma. Meanwhile, the family could stand along the small fence along the baseball field to cheer and take photos.

Watertown High Seniors Cruise in Style for Saturday’s Rolling Rally

A Watertown High school senior pops stood out to get a good view during the start of Saturday’s Class of 2020 Rolling Rally. Dozens of vehicles paraded around town Saturday all decked out with balloons, streamers and signs congratulating Watertown High School’s Class of 2020. The first-of-its-kind in Watertown rolling rally was one of the ways that the school celebrated the seniors in a year when so many other events were cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The seniors are trying to make the best of a very unusual situation. WHS Senior Maddie Poplawski was one first in line for the Rolling Rally celebrating the Class of 2020.

Governor, Sports Stars & Celebrities Taking Part in Televised Class of 2020 Celebration

The following piece was provided by WGBH:

In partnership with WGBH, Governor Charlie Baker will deliver a commencement address to the Class of 2020 as part of a celebration for graduating seniors from 668 public and private schools across the Commonwealth, to be aired in a special broadcast at 7:30 p.m. on Tuesday, June 9. 

Massachusetts Commencement 2020 will feature congratulatory remarks from Jason and Devin McCourty of the New England Patriots, members of the Red Sox and the Boston Celtics, and a number of celebrities with Massachusetts ties, including singer Rachel Platten, actor Steve Carell and more. In a special premiere performance, members of the legendary Boston Pops Orchestra, with Keith Lockhart conducting, will provide the traditional graduation march ‘Pomp and Circumstance’ for the ceremony. Students from around the Commonwealth will give valedictorian-type speeches to their classmates. WGBH will broadcast the program, Massachusetts Commencement 2020, across the Commonwealth, on WGBH 2 in Greater Boston, and on its partner station WGBY/New England Public Media in western Massachusetts. Both stations will stream the program on their website and social media platforms. WGBH also will make the program available to other television stations in Massachusetts, including community access channels.

Minuteman Seniors Get Diplomas at Drive-In Graduation, Watertown Student is Valedictorian

A Minuteman High School students attends the drive-in graduation, Friday, held due to the COVID-19 outbreak. The following piece came from Minuteman High School:

On Friday, June 5, 121 students in the Minuteman Regional Vocational Technical High School’s graduating Class of 2020 received their diplomas in a historic drive-in graduation ceremony. The first-ever drive-in ceremony was held to honor seniors in a timely fashion while also ensuring social distancing amid the coronavirus pandemic. 

Each student was permitted to attend in one vehicle with family or loved ones. They each parked in assigned parking spaces that were grouped by their career majors. One by one, as their names were announced over a live stream on YouTube, students drove to the front of the building where they exited their vehicles to receive their diplomas and posed for photographs. 

In his remarks during the ceremony, Superintendent-Director Edward A. Bouquillon addressed the ongoing pandemic, economic turmoil, and racial unrest that the nation – and our families and communities – are grappling with. 

“I have confidence that you, the class of 2020, who have lost so much this senior year… you have gained an appreciation for the relationship and connection that only this crisis can teach,” Bouquillon said.

See What was in the Gift Bags Given to Watertown High School Seniors

The gift bags put together by the PTSO for the Watertown High School seniors. The Watertown High School Class of 2020’s big celebrations have been muted by the COVID-19 outbreak, but the PTSO tried to lift their spirits by giving each senior a bag full of gifts. The grads received the gift bags this week when they picked up their caps and gowns. Graduation was originally scheduled for Friday, June 5, but the pandemic prevented that from taking place. Instead, the school will hold a drive-up graduation ceremony on June 20.

Different Kind of Graduation Planned for Watertown’s Class of 2020; Students Can Choose Grades or Pass/Fail

One of the signs that went up around town to celebrate Watertown High School’s graduating seniors. Watertown High School’s graduating seniors will be receiving their diplomas at Victory Field, but no in the way they would have expected in the pre-pandemic world. The Class of 2020 will have a drive-up graduation on Saturday, June 20, where they will arrive in a car full of family members, get out and march on the field with Pomp and Circumstance playing and receive their diploma, said Superintendent Dede Galdston at Monday’s School Committee meeting. Students will also have a professional photo taken. The rain location will be the WHS auditorium.