High School Year-end Events 2021
Scotia Glenville High School recognizes the importance of the many hallmark events that traditionally occur during the junior and senior year of high school including National Honor Society, Prom, Senior Banquet, Senior Awards, Senior Picnic and Graduation. The District also acknowledges the loss and/or changes to these events due to the pandemic over the course of last year is significant for our students and their families. To that end, Scotia Glenville High School is currently working with class and club advisors, available venues, and students to make plans for each of these events which comply with the current NYS DOH Health and Safety regulations. Our goal in every planning session is to design an event that comes as close to the form of our traditional events while remaining safe and in compliance with the rules in place.
The NYS Department of Health regulations and CDC Covid-19 guidelines continue to change on a weekly basis which presents a challenge to planning for multiple reasons. While these events are in the future, we must plan with the current regulations in mind all with the knowledge that circumstances may be different by the date of the event. Additionally, venues off-campus require reservations and, in many cases, paid deposits well ahead of the event date. While we expect the pattern of changing requirements to continue we do not have a schedule for most of the coming changes so we must plan in view of what rules are in place today with alternate plans or plans that may be adapted as the environment changes.
National Honor Society Induction
NHS Induction was originally set to occur in the Auditorium on March 31st. Due to the need for additional time in verifying student service records and reviewing applications the date was moved to April 14th. Since it remains the earliest of these hallmark events and, given the current restrictions for gathering, this ceremony was prerecorded and virtual. Inductees were asked to provide a picture. The NHS Advisor, Mrs. Gonnelly and Mr. Bednarek worked with NHS officers to record the ceremony which included all significant features of a NHS Induction and is shared through a video link on the District’s website which became available to all on April 14th at 7:00pm.
Due to the current Covid-19 restrictions on indoor and outdoor food services as well as mass gatherings, we are unable to plan for a typical Jr/Sr Prom with dancing and intense social interaction. Scotia Glenville typically has approximately 350+ students attend the Prom. The maximum indoor gathering size is currently 150 people with a requirement for attendees to be tested prior to the event. This year the High School will hold a truly traditional “promenade” at Riverstone Manor on May 21st for Juniors and Seniors. The historic definition of promenade is to take a leisurely walk in a public place for pleasure or display. This year students will purchase tickets and sign up for a time slot (similar to the Walk-in of previous years). Students will arrive at Riverstone Manor, proceed on a path outside in the picturesque grounds of Riverstone Manor, stop at a trellis for a photo and then receive a full dinner packaged to-go before departing to enjoy their evening. Families will be able to arrive along with each individual or couple during their scheduled time to take pictures of their own as the students follow their promenade. Tickets for this event will cost $30.00 and will be on sale: May 6th – 13th.
Typically, the Senior Banquet occurs on the first Thursday in June and is an opportunity for the Senior Class to be together one final time prior to their Graduation. This event has been fairly casual in the past but this year will feature a semi-formal/formal feel and will offer Seniors that final chance to dress up, gather, dine, and celebrate their high school career together. We have renamed this event the Senior Gala for this year as the Seniors and their advisor will be planning some special features to this unique event. This will be an indoor dinner at Riverstone Manor on June 3rd and attendees will be required to demonstrate proof of immunization or negative Covid-19 test prior to entrance as per current NYS DOH regulations. There will be opportunities prior to the event for students to receive Covid-19 testing. The Seniors will plan some entertainment with their advisor but there will be no dancing at this year’s event. The ticket price which will include the dinner is $15.00.
We continue to organize and coordinate the Senior Awards Ceremony which typically occurs on the morning of the first Friday in June. In this ceremony we award our graduating Seniors with scholarships provided by community members, service organizations, and businesses. Altogether we generally award approximately $65,000 to members of our Senior class. This ceremony will be a hybrid of in-person and virtual. Seniors receiving awards in the ceremony will be invited to attend in-person and sit socially distanced inside the HS Auditorium. Administrators will present the awards and recipients will walk to the stage to receive them. The entire ceremony will be streamed live for families, friends, and the broader community to view.
After the Awards Ceremony Seniors traditionally enjoy a picnic together outside at the high school. Typically, the high school administrators grill hamburgers and hotdogs and students enjoy time signing yearbooks and spending time together. This year the Senior Class has done some additional fundraising and our Senior Picnic will feature enhanced food options from a local food truck and some special treats enjoyed outside (weather permitting) in a socially distanced setting behind the HS according to all current Covid-19 protocols.
Our commencement ceremony remains the culmination point of our school year and while last year’s event included both a virtual presentation and a drive-up diploma ceremony, this year we are excited to be able to have the entire Senior Class together for a ceremony that closely resembles our traditional Tartan Commencement. The ceremony will be held at the Saratoga Performing Arts Center (SPAC) at 5 p.m. on June 28th. Students will be allowed 2 tickets for attendees and the ceremony will be live-streamed in its entirety on a channel provided by SPAC. Currently both indoor and outdoor gatherings are limited in size to 150 and 500 respectively with social distancing and Covid-19 testing requirements. All individuals in attendance will be required to show proof of vaccination or negative Covid-19 test and complete health screener questions.
Why the name change for Junior/Senior Promenade and Senior Gala?
- We are unable to plan and hold a typical Prom with large numbers of attendees for a sit-down, indoor dinner and large group dancing. Instead we are offering our students an opportunity to gather outside in smaller groups with all the attire of a formal event and then leave with prepared food to enjoy with friends in the setting of their choice. To that end, we are reinventing and renaming these separate events for the 2021 school year.
What will happen in the case of inclement weather for the events which are planned for outdoors?
- SGHS is building a weather contingency plan for each event which is scheduled to take place outdoors and will announce these as the events get closer if weather predictions indicate this will be a factor. Graduation at SPAC is considered an outdoor event but all ticketed attendees will be under the roof of the pavilion.
What would happen if more than 150 Seniors signed up for the Senior Gala?
- Current survey numbers from the Senior class indicate that we would have fewer than 150 students wishing to attend. Should that number change, we have a contingency plan with Riverstone Manor which would allow additional attendees to attend by splitting our group up among the ballroom and the tent so that we may remain in compliance.
How will testing be conducted for the formal events? Will there be an added cost for this?
- At the time of this message, current regulations require that attendees at a large gathering (150+ indoors, 500+ outdoors) show proof of one of the following:
- Covid-19 Vaccination
- Negative PCR test w/in 72 hours of the event
- Negative Rapid-antigen test w/in 6 hours of the event
- Proof of having tested positive for Covid-19 w/in the last 90 days (fully recovered)
- SGHS will notify students and families of opportunities for testing within the community within the required time frame for each event.
- There will be no cost options for students who require a test to attend the Gala or Graduation.
Why is there no dancing at the Junior and Senior formal events?
- Although the current Covid-19 regulations allow for dancing, the strict parameters (limited to members of the same table in a restricted space) will not allow for a group of 150 students attending each formal event the opportunity to dance.
If NYS DOH regulations/restrictions change and allow more flexibility will there be more tickets allowed for Graduation?
- In the event that social distancing, capacity guidelines, and other Covid-19 rules change within New York State prior to June 28th, additional tickets per student may be allowed.
Why did the date of Graduation move from Saturday, June 26th to Monday, June 28th?
- One of the highest priorities in planning Commencement was to find a way for the Class of 2021 to be able to graduate all together in one ceremony. SPAC is one of the only venues in the area where that is currently possible (while remaining protected from the weather) and Monday, June 28th is the nearest date available to our previously scheduled ceremony.