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UPDATE: NACS to hold student-only graduation ceremonies; masks required

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FORT WAYNE, Ind. (Fort Wayne's NBC) — Northwest Allen County Schools (NACS) has adjusted plans for Carroll High School's commencement ceremonies to adhere to the governor's order on public gatherings.

Emily Herr is one graduating senior at Carroll High School, and she says it's not going to be like she imagined.

"its gonna be weird for sure, because a lot of us are going to want to take a pictures and be near each other, but we can't, and its gonna be surreal,” Herr said. “I know that the school administrators and everyone there will give us the recognition we earned.” 

Emily Herr's father, Jeff Herr, says watching his daughter graduate from home won't be the same.

"It's disappointing to not be able to watch her walk across that stage, and she’s put a lot of work into earning honors, and its hard to graduate high school in today's world," Herr said. “We’re proud of her, we’re really proud of her, trying to get through all the challenges that COVID brings."

According to a letter sent to students and parents, Carroll Principal Brandon Bitting said the change was made after Gov. Holcomb extended the gathering limit of 250 people.

READ MORE: Holcomb pushes back full capacity for restaurants, bars and entertainment venues

Families told Fort Wayne's NBC that notifications were sent on Thursday, though some said they had not yet received one.

Instead of two ceremonies at the Allen County War Memorial Expo Center, there will now be three. They are scheduled as follows:

  • Ceremony 1 - Last name A - Green; Wednesday, July 8, at 7 p.m.
  • Ceremony 2 - Last name Gregory - M; Thursday, July 9, at 5:30 p.m.
  • Ceremony 3 - Last name N - Z; Thursday, July 9, at 8:30 p.m.

Students are asked to check in starting one hour before the time of each ceremony, and should report directly to their arena seat.

Masks are required.

Only those who have graduated will be allowed to attend. The school will provide a livestream for family and friends to watch the ceremonies at home.

The "Circle of Friendship" event has been postponed until Saturday, July 18, and will follow the previously-provided schedule as long as Gov. Holcomb advances the state into Stage 5 of reopening.

Those attending the "Circle of Friendship" event are asked to confirm using this RSVP Form.

Northwest Allen County Schools and Carroll High School officials could not be reached on Friday, which is a government holiday.

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Jazlynn Bebout

Jazlynn Bebout is the Assignment Desk Editor and Digital Editor at WPTA. Follow her on Twitter @jazlynnsb

Jonathan Shelley

Jonathan Shelley is the news director at WPTA TV, which he joined in 2016 following nine years in a similar role in New Orleans and previous news management positions in Oklahoma City and Las Vegas.

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