Cactus Shadows announces graduation plan

By Foothills Focus Staff

Cactus Shadows High School has a graduation plan—or is it a dozen graduation plans?

“Thanks to the hard work of our Celebration Committee, we will be able to offer a dual graduation event to honor our seniors,” said Dr. Debbi Burdick, superintendent of Cave Creek Unified School District.

Burdick said a “modified ceremony” will take place Thursday, May 21; Friday, May 22; and Saturday, May 23, at the high school’s Fine Arts Center.

“In order to celebrate the 426 graduates, we will be having 12 separate ceremonies,” Burdick said.

Four daily ceremonies will begin at 4 p.m. and conclude at 8:30 p.m. She said information on how students and families can select their dates will be released soon.

“Students and guests will be able to view prerecorded graduation speeches and view the senior slideshow. After this presentation, students will be called to the stage, have their name read, walk across the stage and receive their diploma jacket,” Burdick said.

To maintain social distancing, students and guests will have two empty seats separating each other. “In addition, all students and guests will need to maintain 6 feet of separation while on school grounds,” Burdick said.

Students and guests will be required to wear masks and gloves during the ceremony, though students will be permitted to remove masks while on stage. Students will be provided with a mask and gloves; guests will be required to provide their own.

Burdick stressed there will be no socializing permitted at the site ceremonies.

“(After) each ceremony, we will be asking that all students and guests leave the Fine Arts Center and quickly exit the parking lot, as the next group will be arriving. In between each ceremony, a group of volunteers will disinfect all seats and handrails,” Burdick said.

“These ceremonies will take quite a bit of cooperation in order to ensure the safety of our students, staff, guests and volunteers.”

She said the second part of the dual graduation celebration will be a virtual graduation ceremony broadcast on YouTube Premium in June, with dates and times to be determined.

“The pictures and videos taken during the Fine Arts Center Celebration will be able to be used in our virtual graduation ceremony,” Burdick said.