Class of 2020 Graduation Information

We have a wonderful event planned, thanks to the support of many people in our school community. The Columbia County Fair Board and Chatham Village Mayor John Howe have graciously offered us the use of the fairgrounds for our ceremony, which will be held on Friday, June 26th at 6 p.m. The event will be a drive-thru style graduation.

Here are some important details for your planning efforts:

  • We will be hosting a cap and gown pick-up on Wednesday, June 17th from noon until 3:30 p.m. at the high school. Cars need only pull up to the curb in front of the building and we will bring you your cap and gown along with further details on your graduation, including a ticket and a small surprise from Mrs. Tomaso.
  • Please bring any school materials with you on Wednesday to drop at school, including Chromebooks, chargers, and textbooks. We will need those items prior to graduation.
  • All speeches and addresses to the graduates will be pre-recorded and shared with families the day of graduation. The time will be announced as we get closer to graduation day.
  • On June 26th, students should begin to arrive at the fairgrounds via the Hudson Avenue entrance. You will check in with your ticket and then we will stage cars for the ceremony. Please begin to arrive around 5:15 p.m. All cars must be staged for the ceremony no later than 5:45 p.m.
  • Families should consider bringing soft drinks and snacks to have available in their vehicles. The ceremony has the potential to last a couple of hours.
  • At the ceremony there will be a diploma station, a picture station for the graduate, a station to pick up your graduation packets, and a station for family pictures. The school is providing photographers. More details are provided about the logistics in the link below.
  • Once all the diplomas have been issued and pictures have been taken, first responders and emergency vehicles will lead the graduates and families on a procession through town. The route is as follows:
  1. Take a left onto Hudson Avenue
  2. Proceed down Main Street and continue around the rotary
  3. Proceed down Kinderhook Street
  4. Take a left onto Woodbridge Avenue and then continue down to Chatham High School, where we will circle the campus and end the parade.

Families may help decorate the fairgrounds for the celebration. Social distancing should always be observed. I would encourage families to make signs and messages directed towards the entire class. Please keep all messages appropriate for attendees of all ages. More information on decorations is provided in the link below.

We will need to have all decorations down and the grounds cleaned up by Saturday, June 27th. Your assistance will be appreciated. More details will follow.

Key Safety Procedures and Guidance from the NYS Department of Health

  • Families may only bring one car, which should only include members who reside in the same household. Unfortunately, no other family members or community members will be allowed into the fairgrounds to view the ceremony.
  • There must be no person-to-person contact during the celebration. No handshakes during diploma handouts. Masks and gloves will be worn by individuals handing out diplomas and other items.
  • Any individuals in attendance must wear a mask or face covering. Individual students and family members may remove their face coverings when receiving their diploma and while having their pictures taken by school provided photographers.
  • All social distancing protocols must be followed during the procession through town. We hope people will be out to celebrate our graduates while maintaining a safe environment.
  • Both entrances to the fairgrounds will be closed once all families are checked in.
  • A limited number of portable lavatory facilities will be available during the ceremony.
  • The Chatham School Resource Deputy and other law enforcement representatives will be on site for security purposes.



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