Portland seniors to graduate at Providence Park
This June, families will gather and cheer at Providence Park not for the Thorns or Timbers, but for hundreds of graduating high school seniors.
Portland Public Schools will hold its annual commencement ceremonies at the downtown soccer stadium, allowing for an outdoor venue where guests can be distanced.
PPS Superintendent Guadalupe Guerrero made the announcement Tuesday, April 27, during a school board meeting.
"Holding commencement ceremonies outdoors will allow us to welcome graduates and their families to be together for this important day," Guerrero said. "Providence Park is a historical gym and of course known worldwide for the magic that is the Timbers and the Thorns."
Last year, many high schools held drive-thru graduation ceremonies due to coronavirus restrictions. This year, having a large outdoor venue will allow ceremonies to take place in a more traditional format.
"It's a particularly appropriate location to celebrate our graduates and helps to support a healthy and safe event," Guerrero said.
All comprehensive high schools will hold commencement ceremonies at Providence Park, according to the superintendent, while the district's alternative programs have opted to hold their own smaller scale ceremonies, as they've customarily done in the past.
The superintendent noted plans are contingent on local health metrics and restrictions and said the school district will continue to monitor the COVID-19 spread in Oregon.
A web page with more specifics and dates is expected to be rolled out shortly. A few high schools, including Ida B. Wells-Barnett and Cleveland High School, have already noted commencement ceremonies on June 7 and 8, respectively.
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