No more pencils, no more books, no more teacher's dirty looks, out for summer, out till fall, we might not come back at all…” Okay, Alice Cooper’s bop “School’s Out” is hitting pretty hard for all our students about now. That is, if they’re even old enough to know the lyrics, haha.

All jokes aside, schools are not holding sessions IRL — and even though online school might not be a big deal for the majority of grade levels, our seniors are hurting. Think about it, you go to grade school for about 13 years and college for about four all to walk across a stage to accept your diploma. And now, due to the health and safety regulations our nation is under, that moment might not come for the Class of 2020. As of now, these students won’t be returning to class for the remainder of the school year meaning they might not get to see some of their friends/classmates again.

So, how should you honor your graduate and throw them the celebration they deserve during the COVID19 outbreak? Keep reading, it’s time to get creative.

Time for commencement

Will the Class of 2020 please stand up, please stand up...The moment has come, and this year’s commencement might be held in your own living room or yard. Get the family together and stage a graduation right at home. Just be sure to keep the group small and remember social distancing best practices. Set up chairs, a makeshift stage, have your grad put on their cap and gown, choose an announcer and “guest speaker” and you’ll be ready for action.

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And, if you want to get seriously creative, work with other families and the school to create a virtual graduation. A virtual video chat could be held (like a Zoom meeting) and everyone could join the video meeting at a set time and have the host announce each graduate's name and live-stream a commencement speaker. The grad pics could be a framed screenshot.

Gonna party like it’s… 2020

Of course, after every ceremony comes the P-A-R-T-Y. It might not be the giant bash they hoped for, but despite the headcount, a party is a party. Keep it lowkey with just the immediate family, or throw one or two gatherings with your grad’s friends...as long as the guest list stays under 10.

DIY decorations or order some offline. Brownie points if you support a local business for Class of 2020 decor. Bake a cake or cupcakes at home if you are not wanting to order one. Once again, check and see if any local bakeries are accepting graduation cake orders to help them out during this time.

Ah, and finally...the gifts. Send your grad a card with gift cards to their favorite stores rather than money, or write a check. You can also order books, clothes, flowers, e-cards, etc. and have those presents sent directly to them.

Regardless of if you are able to attend a ceremony or not, the thought and effort will make this year’s graduation one for the books.

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