Principal's Messages

  • Further Details for Graduation Events

    While this has been a challenging few months for the Class of 2020, we are excited to have the opportunity to follow a two-part plan to celebrate our graduates. As you know, we are pre-recording individual diploma presentations this week, with up to six guests per graduate, to become part of a virtual graduation ceremony.

    We will also hold a limited attendance, in-person, outdoor graduation ceremony on our football field on Saturday, June 27 at 7 p.m. Unfortunately, in order to stay within the mandated cap of 150 people, only graduates and designated school personnel will attend the outdoor ceremony.  While the in-person ceremony will not be open to guests, it will be recorded and live-streamed on the school website and Facebook page.   All participants will wear face coverings, provided by the school, during the ceremony and everyone will be seated at least six feet apart.

    I am excited that we will be able to gather the class of 2020 together as a group one last time.  I know this was on the top of the priority list for our seniors.  We have been hard at work planning these two celebrations, virtual and in-person ceremonies, to meet the needs of our graduates and their families, to the greatest extent possible under the current guidelines.

    We will a mandatory rehearsal for the in-person ceremony on June 26th at 11 a.m.  We ask that the students to report to the elementary school parking lot, where we will be waiting for them.  The rehearsal should take about one hour to complete.  During the rehearsal, students will be allowed to select who they will walk down the aisle with and sit near during the ceremony.  It will be helpful if the students have selected their partners prior to the rehearsal.  After the rehearsal, the Phelps American Legion will be serving the students a chicken barbeque lunch in the elementary school parking lot.  Students will remain at their cars and social distancing will be followed during the lunch.

    A traditional graduation ceremony will be held on June 27th at 7 p.m. on the football field with a rain date of June 28th, time TBD. Students must arrive no later than 6:30 p.m. and park or be dropped off in the elementary school parking lot. Please make sure they arrive with their caps and gowns. We are recommending that no high heal shoes be worn due to the location of our ceremony on the football field. It will be difficult to walk on the grass and dangerous for anyone attempting to do so. 

    Graduation will start promptly at 7 p.m. with students processing onto the football field. We will conduct a shortened traditional graduation program which should take between one to one and a half hours to complete. The event will be live streamed so parents, family, and friends can watch. You can view the live stream at Midlakes.org or facebook.com/midlakesschools.

    After completing the ceremony, we will be holding a Class of 2020 parade through Clifton Springs and Phelps. Parents are welcome and encouraged to participate.  The local fire and police departments will lead the parade.  We ask anyone participating in the parade to decorate their cars to celebrate the Class of 2020.  

    After the parade, we invite all of our Class of 2020 families to return to campus and park in either the high school or elementary school parking lots to view a fireworks display. This display has been donated by the Chem Free Party Committee. The fireworks will start at dark (approximately 9:45-10 p.m.) and should last for about 15 minutes. Due to current CDC regulations families will need to remain in their vehicles during the fireworks show.      

    Although this year has been very different, I think we were able to put together two events that truly celebrate the accomplishments of the Class of 2020. I look forward to celebrating the Midlakes class of 2020 with all of you. 

    Thank you for your continued patience and support.  If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact me at fbairossi@midlakes.org.

    Sincerely,
    Frank Bai-Rossi, Principal

    Graduation Events to Include Outdoor Ceremony

    I hope this letter finds all our seniors and their families safe and healthy as we head into the final stretch of the school year. We have been hard at work planning to celebrate our class of 2020. I know graduation has been at the forefront of everyone’s minds. On Sunday June 7the Governor announced the lifting of some restrictions surrounding graduation. We can now hold an outdoor, in-person graduation ceremony with up to 150 people (socially distanced).    

    Based on this new information, we have changed our plans for graduation. We will be holding two events. The first event is a virtual, recorded ceremony where individual students will walk across the stage and receive their diplomas, with up to six guests present. The second event is a graduation ceremony on the football field with just the students and necessary school personnel present. We will live-stream this in-person ceremony so families and loved ones can watch. The pre-recorded virtual ceremony and the live-streamed in-person ceremony will both be posted on the school website. 

    All the feedback we have received from the students has been the same. The graduates want to be together as a class one last time. With the cap of 150 people, we could not have the graduates and their family in the same location and still follow the state guidance. We have decided to hold two event so the graduates can be together and parents can witness and celebrate their children’s diploma distribution. We wish these two goals could be accomplished in one event, but we are thankful for the opportunity for the Midlakes Class of 2020 to celebrate together. We will continue to monitor the guidance from the Governor and we will adjust our plans if more options (ex. larger attendance at the in-person ceremony) are allowed.

    Virtual Graduation 

    We will start this process by distributing caps, gowns and yearbooks on June 11, from 3:30-5:30 pm in the high school bus loop. Please enter the bus loop from the elementary school entrance and proceed to the high school main entrance. We will be there to distribute caps, gowns, and yearbooks. We ask that you drop off any completed work, textbooks, and your iPad during this time.

    We will ask each graduate to sign up for a 15-minute time slot to receive their diploma between June 15-18. A digital sign-up for appointment times on our district website. I have also included the link at the end of this letter. To accommodate all families, we will have both daytime and evening hours.

    Under current state regulations, we are still limited on the number of people we can gather at one time. When you come to the building for your scheduled time, you will be allowed to bring the graduate and six guests. We cannot permit any additional people as we must stay within current CDC guidelines of 10 people or less. All members of the family and the graduate must wear a mask in order to enter the building. If anyone is showing symptoms of COVID-19 or has been exposed to someone who has been diagnosed with the virus, they will not be allowed to attend.  

    It will be important for us to keep families socially distanced throughout this process. Please arrive for your scheduled time no more than 5 minutes early. When you come to the building for your appointment, we ask that you park in the main high school lot and enter through the main office entrance. There will be a check-in station in the vestibule where further instructions will be provided. Please make sure to bring your cap and gown. Once in the building, there will be a second station located by the PSO, where we will hold families until the auditorium is clear, disinfected and ready for the next family. At this point, families and the graduate will be separated. The graduate will proceed to the side entrance of the stage and the families will enter the main entrance to the auditorium. Families should feel free to bring cameras/cell phones to take pictures and videos of their own.

    Graduates will walk across the stage where their name will be announced, and they will receive their diploma. This will all be captured on video in order to create a larger Class of 2020 graduation video.

    We are working on plans for the in-person graduation on the football field. You can expect more information to be released soon. The in-person ceremony will be held on the evening of Saturday, June 27 (specific start time TBD), with a rain date of Sunday, June 28, in the morning or afternoon.

    This year we will be allowing our graduates to decorate their caps with a message or picture. We trust and expect the decorations to be tasteful and appropriate. This will be the first time in the history of Midlakes this is allowed, and I am excited to see the creativity of our seniors.

    I look forward to celebrating the Midlakes Class of 2020 through the combination of these creative events! 

    Sincerely,

    Frank Bai-Rossi,
    Principal
    Midlakes Secondary School

    Virtual Graduation Registration link:
    https://outlook.office365.com/owa/calendar/FilmingforourVirtualGraduation@midlakes.org/bookings/.

Upcoming Celebrations

  • Cap & Gown/Yearbook Pickup
    3:30-5:30 p.m., Thursday, June 11
    Main Bus Loop


    Virtual Walk-throughs
    Monday, June 15 - Thursday, June 18

    Sign-up here (scroll through times)
    Midlakes High School Auditorium


    Senior Lunch/Chicken Barbecue
    (Preceeded by rehearsal at 11 a.m., sponsored by American Legion Post No. 457)
    Noon, Friday, June 26
    Midlakes High School Parking Lot


    Hometown Farewell Tour Scavenger Hunt
    (Sponsored by the Chem-Free Party)
    Following Senior Lunch, Friday, June 26


    Student-Only Ceremony
    7 p.m., Saturday, June 27
    (Rain date: Sunday, June 28)
    Ollie Cook Stadium


    Graduation Parade
    (Following ceremony)
    Through Clifton Springs, Phelps


    Graduation Fireworks
    Aprox. 9:45 p.m., Saturday, June 27
    (Sponsored by Chem-Free Party)