While the coronavirus pandemic halted events like prom and senior award nights, Charlotte County high school seniors will get the chance to walk across the stage and receive their diplomas in July. At least that is the current plan.

As the state slowly enters into phase two of reopening, district administrators recently announced plans for live commencement ceremonies for schools throughout the county.

Here is the proposed plan for the following schools:

July 14 – Port Charlotte High School at 9 a.m. (football field or virtual)

July 14 – Charlotte Harbor School at 6 p.m. (at the school)

July 15 – The Academy at 9 a.m. (Port Charlotte High School stadium or virtual)

July 15 – Charlotte Virtual School at 6 p.m. (Charlotte Performing Arts Center)

July 16 – Charlotte High School at 9 a.m. (stadium or virtual)

July 17 – Lemon Bay High at 9 a.m. (stadium or virtual)

Kim Amontree, Charlotte County School Board District 2, said at the present time, all of the schools with the exception of Charlotte Technical College are planning in-person graduations.

“Our first priority is to ensure this can be done in a manner that is safe for students and family members,” Amontree said. “I am hopeful that we will be able to accomplish this. It is important for students and families to have this marker of an important milestone in their lives. A virtual graduation is just not the same. All three of my children are graduates of the class of 2020. Two have had virtual graduations and as much as the schools tried to recreate the experience it is not the same as watching your student march to Pomp and Circumstance and walk across the stage. I am looking forward to watching my daughter Ashley walk across that stage with her fellow 2020 Charlotte High students.”

Amontree added that she is proud of all the local high school students.

“They have risen to the challenge of online learning and I am confident that however we acknowledge their graduation that they will be successful. They have already proven themselves to be resilient, thoughtful and resourceful no matter what obstacles come their way.”

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