- Due to the severity of the COVID-19 emergency, schools across the Commonwealth not only canceled in-person classes, they also canceled in-person activities, including traditional graduation ceremonies.
- Toyah Robey, principal at KSD, and her staff wanted to find a way to honor their seniors and allow family members to be a part of this special moment.
By Jacob Perkins
Twelve director’s chairs were placed in the parking lot of Thomas Gym on the campus of Kentucky School for the Deaf (KSD).
These chairs – properly distanced – were to signify that the 2020 graduates of KSD are now the directors of their own lives.
All 172 Kentucky school districts, 53 area technology centers, the Kentucky School for the Blind and KSD ceased in-person classes and began instituting non-traditional instruction in response to a March 16 recommendation by Gov. Andy Beshear.
Due to the severity of the COVID-19 emergency, schools across the Commonwealth not only canceled in-person classes, but they also canceled in-person activities, which included traditional graduation ceremonies.
Principal Toyah Robey and the KSD staff wanted to find a way to honor their seniors and allow family members to be a part of this special moment.
Each senior was allowed to bring two vehicles to the event and KSD staff were invited but were required to RSVP in advance.
The ceremony began with a police escort through downtown Danville, where the community, retired staff and alumni cheered on the students. All of the cars were decorated to honor the graduating class.
Once they arrived on campus, students made their way to their director’s chair. All other family members and staff remained in their vehicles.
KSD worked alongside their local health department and followed guidance from the Kentucky Department of Education when planning this event.
“The positive feedback from our students, families, staff and special guests who attended the event was very special and all actually enjoyed it being outside,” said Robey. “We are grateful we were allowed to have this special time for our seniors.
“It was also so important for our staff to be able to see and celebrate them as well. KSD is family. Many of our students spend more time living on campus than they do with their families, as we are a residential school. We love our students and will miss these seniors tremendously.”
For more information about COVID-19:
- Kentucky Department for Public Health’s COVID-19 webpage
- KDE’s COVID-19 webpage
- COVID-19 Hotline (800) 722-5725