BLADEN COUNTY, N.C. (WECT) – After Bladen County School officials announced graduation plans for seniors, some parents and students came up with an alternative plan for the ceremony.
The school’s plan has each student having their own personalized ceremony on June 1. The school worked with the county health department to ensure it would be safe and follow health guidelines.
“No one wants to graduate along with four family members that they live with already and see them walk across a library, pick up a piece of paper off a table with a mask and gloves on with their cap and gown,” said Jennifer Potter. “It’s just not acceptable. It was clear from the start when we heard that; something had to be done”
Potter, a mom of a Bladen County Schools senior, has spearheaded a plan to go about the graduation ceremonies differently.
“Everything has been taken away from them and it’s not fair to take graduation away too,” said Potter.”
Her plan includes drive-in graduation ceremonies for East Bladen High School on June 12 and for West Bladen High School on June 13. Each senior would be given a car pass to attend the graduation. The only time anyone will exit the vehicle is when the senior’s name is called. The senior will walk across the outdoor stage and then get back into the car.
Potter says she came up with plan with other parents and teachers. She said they got ideas from other school system’s graduation plans. Potter says she also spoke with the Bladen County Health Department, the Elizabethown Police Department, and East Bladen High School leaders.
Potter organized a peaceful protest outside the school’s district office Monday afternoon. During that protest, she had a private meeting with school county leaders, including Dr. Robert Taylor.
“Very nice, very responsive,” said Potter. “It sounded like it’s really going to go smooth. Everybody is just showing up here in numbers just to say we support this plan and we all come together.”
Valerie Newton with Bladen County Schools says they are going to let both principals from East and West Bladen High Schools along with the sheriff’s office and the county health department look at the proposal before moving forward.
Potter said it will also be discussed at the board of education meeting Monday at 6.
Copyright 2020 WECT. All rights reserved.