QUINCY — Quincy Notre Dame High School plans virtual celebrations in May to honor its Class of 2020, with hopes of a summer event to bring students together.
"Our goal was to deliver on something in the short-term in hopes of being able to deliver something else in the long-term," QND Principal Mark McDowell said.
With the COVID-19 pandemic's "circumstances and parameters, we felt as though a virtual situation was something we could deliver on in a meaningful way, also with the idea of doing something perhaps later in the summer."
The school's honors convocation, baccalaureate mass and graduation will take place virtually and will be broadcast on the original dates and times — honors convocation at 9 a.m. Tuesday, May 12, baccalaureate Mass at 7 p.m. Thursday, May 14, and graduation at 1 p.m. Sunday, May 17.
The baccalaureate Mass will be filmed in the QND chapel, and the honors convocation and graduation will be filmed in the QND gym.
McDowell said "very few" people will be involved in the graduation ceremony, which will feature him reading from a script similar to what has been done in past years.
Without students present, "we're leaning in the direction that as student names are read in the midst of the ceremony, we would see a submitted photo of them," McDowell said.
Some parts of the ceremony will be recorded offsite, then merged with other footage.
"We're fortunate to partner with Frank Cann of Cann Productions," McDowell said. "He is helping us get our footage together and package the ceremonies in a way we can stream them to our students and families."
QND also hopes to hold a summer event to recognize graduates.
"We identified Sunday, June 28, as a potential opportunity," McDowell said. "We have referred to it as a senior gathering. It could be just that, getting people together. It could be more formal along the lines of an official ceremony. We'll need to speak to families as we get deeper in the calendar as to what they might want."