DISD Statement Regarding Graduation

Devine Independent School District Graduation on June 12, 2020 Statement
Posted on 06/16/2020
This is the image for the news article titled Devine Independent School District Graduation on June 12, 2020 StatementJune 15, 2020

Re: Devine Independent School District Graduation on June 12, 2020

I would like to thank our community, faculty and staff for helping to provide the 2020 graduates with a graduation ceremony that both celebrated their accomplishments and included necessary precautions to ensure their health and safety. Graduation is such an important milestone. As such, I wanted to let you know that no graduate was denied the opportunity to participate in the ceremony.

I have been made aware of community concern regarding student participation. Devine ISD has an ongoing investigation into this situation and disagrees with the way the details have been portrayed.

The Texas Education Agency guidelines prevented us from having graduation practices. Therefore, graduating seniors were scheduled to meet in small groups several days before the ceremony with high school administrators and given a detailed packet that outlined:
  • Ceremony details and schedules-which included a 7:15 report time for graduates with an 8:00 ceremony start time
  • Dress code regulations in accordance with the student handbook
  • Requirement to sign a COVID-19 attestation -and the importance of the attestation
  • Family seating instructions
  • Parking and entrance instructions for graduates
The COVID-19 Pandemic made commencement exercises a challenge for everyone involved. With this in mind, Devine ISD was dedicated to providing as much flexibility to students and their families on the evening of graduation as possible. To that end, we ensured that:
  • Blank copies of the COVID-19 Attestation were available for parents and students at every entrance in case they had forgotten or lost their original copies.
  • Students who arrived out of dress code were offered assistance to remedy the issue(s). (Staff provided extra ties, safety pins for wardrobe issues, razors, and shaving cream as needed.)
  • The ceremony start time was delayed to accommodate clearing the entrance lines for attending guests.

Under educational and privacy restrictions, Devine ISD is not allowed to comment on personal information of any of the 2020 graduates. However, let me reiterate that no graduate was denied the opportunity to participate in the graduation ceremony because of hair length or hair style or any other dress code violation.

Devine Independent School District is focused on the success and recognition of all of our students. Administration, faculty, and staff work endless hours to bring each student to graduation and turn them loose to the next steps of their lives. I fully support the decisions made and stand behind our personnel in regards to the planning, information dissemination, coordination, and execution of the 2020 Devine ISD graduation ceremony. This has been an extremely trying year for all of our students, so I am especially proud of ALL of our seniors in obtaining their high school diplomas!

Respectfully,

Dr. Todd Grandjean

 

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