Hawaii Public Schools Leaving High School Plans Announced

Hawaii’s public high schools will hold graduation degrees in various locations for the 2021 class to accommodate pandemic precautions, with several major schools choosing Aloha Stadium.

The Department of Education announced the dates, times and formats for the ceremonies this afternoon, posting a list online on the DOE website that will continue to be updated.

The first event is scheduled for May 15 when Pearl City High graduates spin their tassels at Aloha Stadium. Other schools that choose this location for opening ceremonies include Aiea, Farrington, Kaiser, Mililani, Moanalua, and Waipahu. Graduates and essential staff will be inside the stadium while guests and vehicles, in limited numbers, will remain outside.

“We are very proud of our class of 2021 graduates for their scholarships, student leadership and resilience during this very difficult time of COVID-19,” said Superintendent Christina Kishimoto. “Our high schools across the islands worked with graduates, parents and families to plan the best possible celebrations while meeting social distancing requirements and other health and safety guidelines.”

Many schools offer drive-through degree pickups on their campuses or take graduates away from their peers across the stage. Campbell High School, the state’s largest public school, will host a drive-through diploma pickup on its campus for the 650 seniors scheduled to graduate.

At Roosevelt High, graduates in caps and gowns will be recognized individually as they each walk through the school auditorium stage. Two of the graduate’s guests can stand below and take photos. Social distancing requirements due to COVID-19 prohibit other family members or friends from gathering outside of school to meet graduates.

“The ceremony will be televised live so that family and friends can watch it from the comfort of their homes,” the school said in a statement.

Kalani High School has booked the Hawaii Convention Center on May 25 for its in-person ceremony, with graduates and essential staff only inside the center. Castle High is hosting two ceremonies to welcome its seniors in person to campus and the events will be broadcast live.

On the neighboring islands, Kauai High School has opted for Vidinha Stadium for its in-person ceremony, which will also be broadcast live. Baldwin High and Maui High will use War Memorial Stadium.

“We thank our school communities and our partners who worked to make these events truly special,” said Kishimoto.

Families of students who have questions should contact their school. The list of schools and their graduation plans are available online at 808ne.ws/2021grad.

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