Photo by Marcela Net

By Mike Lynn

Graduation season has arrived and students are excited for the change to come. However, due to the decision to hold the graduation ceremony indoors, a high school graduating class is less enthusiastic and tries to make a change.

Last month, at the regular meeting of the East Stroudsburg Area School District (ESASD) Board of Trustees in April, the announcement that the East Stroudsburg South High School graduation will take place at the interior has been made. The decision came from the principals and the superintendent of the school, and the students are not happy. A petition was launched three weeks ago in hopes of convincing the administration to reverse its decision.

The petition states: “The Class of 2022 is unfortunately due to graduate this year. As the senior of the Class of 2022, we all felt like we would be graduating on the outside due to the Class of 2021 graduating on our own turf. We had no say in whether we could graduate on grass or indoors, and we were never asked what we wanted as a class. none of us will ever forget. Sign this petition so the class of 2022 can experience a true graduation in the purple pit!”

During the regular ESASD board meeting on May 16, East Stroudsburg Area School District Board Member Wayne Rohner presented a motion to hold the graduation ceremony at the outside. During the ensuing discussion, board members raised concerns about inclement weather which could potentially postpone the event, causing additional challenges for extended family traveling a long distance to attend, as a reason to hold the graduation indoors. “There are parents and grandparents who come from far away. If it becomes a problem of scheduling and they have to move it, you are now talking about hundreds of grandparents who will not see their grandchildren get their graduation,” said East Stroudsburg Area School District Board Member Steven Lurry. Rebecca Bear, another Board member, added: “Our policy is clear that it is up to the Superintendent and the Director. It is our job as the Board to support the policy. The reason I voted yes to put on the agenda is so we can discuss this in public, so the public knows who makes the decision and why we make the decisions we make.” After During the discussion period, a vote to have the graduation away took place. Rohner was the only vote in favor. East Stroudsburg South High School’s graduation is scheduled for June 11.

See the regular meeting of the ESASD Board of Directors on May 16 below. Graduation discussions begin at 1:49:00.

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