Modified Graduation Plan

modified grad plan

  • Date: Friday, May 29, 2020
    Time: 8:20 p.m. (new time)
    Type: In-person, outdoor ceremony
    Location: Dragon Stadium
    Graduates: 700+

    Stadium Seating Capacity (minus handicap seats):
    Home Side: 6,861
    Visitor Side: 3,224
    End Zone: 400 (Utilized by CISD staff only)

    This modified graduation plan is based on Governor Greg Abbott’s Executive Order No. GA-21 issued on May 5, 2020 and follows the guidance of the Texas Education Agency. Carroll ISD will be responsible for communicating this modified graduate plan to all essential staff working the ceremony, to all graduating seniors in the Class of 2020 and to all graduate families. In addition, CISD will communicate the plan and the link to the live stream of the ceremony to the public. 

    Baseline Guidance Per the Texas Education Agency:

    • School districts are advised to consult with legal counsel regarding graduation plans.
    • If legal counsel finds the written plan permissible, the district could then seek written approval from the applicable local jurisdiction tasked with enforcement of the COVID-19-related gubernatorial or local orders to engage in the planned graduation.
    • Participation by a student or family member in a ceremony is voluntary.
    • Permission for an outdoor, in-person ceremony on May 29 was granted by the Texas Education Agency per the Governor’s Executive Order on May 6, 2020.
    • School systems must cap the number of total participants (inclusive of students, families and staff) to a level that can be managed in the outdoor venue to maximize social distancing, both during the event and during entry/exit.
    • School employees and facilities must comply with the guidance for School Employees in School Facilities except as authorized by this guidance.
    • Students and parents (or legal guardians) must comply with the guidance on Student Non-Instructional Visits except as authorized by this guidance.
    • Prior to attending the ceremony, participating students and attending family members must be screened (via questioning) by school system employees for any of the following new or worsening signs or symptoms of possible COVID-19 (those found with any of these signs or symptoms must be excluded from the activity):
      • Cough
      • Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing
      • Chills
      • Repeated shaking with chills
      • Muscle pain
      • Headache
      • Sore throat
      • Loss of taste or smell
      • Diarrhea
      • Feeling feverish or a measured temperature greater than or equal to 100 degrees Fahrenheit
      • Known close contact with a person who is lab confirmed to have COVID-19 if exposure to the active confirmed case occurred within the last 14 days.
    • Graduates may only be brought together for one event per class. No rehearsals will be permitted.
    • Keep 6 feet or more of spacing between all participants, except that members of the same household (five individuals or fewer excluding the graduate if seated with the household) may be allowed to sit together in the audience but must be at least six feet away from any other family group at all times.
    • Hand sanitizer or hand-washing stations must be available at all venue entrances.
    • School employees at the ceremony must be limited to the minimum number needed to logistically support the ceremony.
    • Diplomas or other documents may not be handed from person-to-person unless gloves are worn by those distributing diplomas.
    • Consistent with the actions taken by many institutions across the state, consider having all employees, students or other visitors wear cloth face coverings (over the nose and mouth) while inside any facilities, or if they will come within 6 feet of another person who is not a member of that person’s household, except when photos are taken. If available, they should consider wearing non-medical grade face masks.
    • Care should be taken and effort must be made to mitigate virus exposure when participants come into contact with documents and other objects such as diplomas and awards.
    • School employees must be stationed appropriately to ensure compliance with all requirements and to limit congregation.
    • A robust communication plan must be in place to address steps to be taken before, during and after the ceremony to ensure that participants are aware of safety protocols at the ceremony and explicit instructions to graduates not to congregate outside of school sponsored ceremonies or events.
    • School officials should communicate with students’ families prior to the ceremony to determine how many family members will be attending so they can plan appropriately to implement social distancing measures, logistics, and other safety measures.
    • Assigned seating for members of the audience should be considered to more efficiently ensure separation between household groups.
    • Specific plans should be developed for arrivals and departures to ensure appropriate social distancing. 

    CISD’s In-Person Outdoor Graduation Ceremony Plan 

    • School officials had this Modified Graduation Plan reviewed by the school attorney for compliance with the Governor’s Executive Order and Guidance from the Texas Education Agency, as well as any orders existing in Tarrant County.
    • This Modified Graduation Plan was reviewed and approved by Mayor Laura Hill, City Staff and the Southlake Police Department, as well.
    • Carroll ISD will hold graduation at Dragon Stadium on Friday, May 29, at 8:20 p.m. (new time)
    • There will be no rehearsal and no congregating at the stadium or around the field or parking lots before/after the ceremony. Parking lots and Gates open at 7 p.m.
    • A pre-printed parking pass will be required in the driver’s front dash window to come onto the property.
    • A pre-printed ticket will be required to enter the stadium gates. Graduates will have a preprinted ticket with their field seat row and number. Family tickets will have the family name and assigned seats printed on a single ticket. Families should enter together at one of four entry gates on the home side stands.
    • The ceremony will be live-streamed for those family and friends unable to attend the in-person event. Carroll ISD will communicate prior to the event how the public can access the live-stream link.
    • Graduates and essential CISD staff working the ceremony will be seated six-feet apart on the stadium field facing the video scoreboard/stage.
    • The graduation stage will be in the west end zone near the video scoreboard (facing the graduates/field house).
    • Guests will be limited in number and spread out, grouped by members of the same household in the home and visitor stands.
    • Graduate messages will play on the video scoreboard AND the live stream before/immediately after the graduation ceremony.
    • To prevent exposure and limit occupancy, Dragon Band and Green Jackets will not participate in this year’s modified ceremony.

    Ticket Entry Only
    Carroll ISD is restricted to 25% occupancy at Dragon Stadium. Because of this, the district will be required to limit the number of guests per graduate. Because of the necessary planning time, seat numbering, health pre-screening and preprinted ticket process, CISD will continue to follow the 25% occupancy plan and limit the total number of tickets per graduate even if the Governor increases the occupancy percentages before the event date. Therefore, the graduation plan will not change even if the Governor allows for greater occupancy. In the event the Governor places new or additional restrictions on in-person outdoor graduation ceremonies before the event occurs, CISD will adjust the plan to comply with the Governor’s Executive Order.

    The Carroll Sr. High staff will conduct a Senior Survey on Friday, May 15 to find out which members of the Class of 2020 plan to participate in the May 29 event at Dragon Stadium. At that time, the Senior Survey will help CSHS obtain the name(s) of the graduate’s guests (up to four parents/siblings living in the same household) at graduation. This survey will be conducted at least two weeks prior to the ceremony to ensure proper planning and communication.  The purpose of this survey is to obtain names of participants for the health pre-screening questionnaires and to determine actual ticket needs for parents/siblings living in the same household.

    Ticket Cap
    Each graduate will receive up to a total of five (5) tickets. One (1) ticket for the student graduating on the field and up to four (4) tickets for parents/siblings who live in the same household. The row and seat assigned to each individual will appear on the ticket. Graduates not needing all of their tickets for immediate family members (parents/siblings living in the same household) will have their unused tickets placed into a pool for use by students of divorce/separation or those with additional siblings who live in the same household. Students with more siblings and students of divorce/separation may request up to two (2) additional tickets (for a total of six) for as long as CISD has tickets remaining within the seating capacity allowed by the Governor’s Executive Order.

    Tickets will have a preprinted seat row and number, grouped together by family members of the same household. Tickets will not be distributed until the students and guest fill out the health questionnaire. Tickets will be printed and available for pickup in a designated area determined by first initial of last name of the graduate at CSHS between 12 p.m. and 2 p.m. on the day of the ceremony. CSHS staff will communicate when and where the graduate should pick up his/her tickets.

    Family Health Questionnaires will be sent out via email at 8 a.m. the day before the ceremony (Thursday, May 28). Seat locations will be assigned on a first come, first serve basis as questionnaires are completed and submitted electronically to CISD. 

    Parking by Permit Only

    • Only cars with the pre-printed permits checked by security staff will be allowed on the stadium property.
    • Essential CISD staff working graduation will be given one (1) parking permit to park in the visitor parking lot and/or transportation center.
    • Each graduating student will be given two (2) parking permits only (for approximately 1400 permits). If the student drives alone to the ceremony and gives the second parking permit to his/her family, the graduate will park on the visitor side parking lot and the family will park on the home side parking lot for a total of two (2) cars.
    • A graduate of divorce/separation may request a second parking permit from CSHS (using the Senior Survey) for their second family. A graduate that chooses to ride with family members in the same car can first be dropped off on the visitor side gate by the family. Then the family must park in the home side parking lot.

    Health Pre-screening

    • Graduates and their families will receive an online health screening questionnaire beginning at 8 a.m. the day before the ceremony. The form must be completed and submitted by 2 p.m. the day of the event for the graduate to participate in the in-person ceremony and pick up their tickets.
    • Each graduate whose fmaily completes a Family Health Questionnaire will have one printed graduate ticket that shows their row and seat number for field seating.  Each graduate’s family that completes the health questionnaire will have one family ticket with the printed row and seat numbers for up to four (4) seats together. Tickets may be picked up by graduates between 12 p.m. and 2 p.m. the day of the ceremony at CSHS. The Administration will assign a location for graduates to pick up their tickets at CSHS based on the first letter of the graduate’s last name.
    • Signage at the entrances to the event will also explain health-screening precautions and symptoms of COVID-19 set forth by state health officials.

    Arrival Time

    • Graduates are expected to arrive by 7:00 p.m., exit their car to put on their graduation cap/gown at their parking space and then walk to the visitor side gate maintaining appropriate distance from other graduates. Once the graduate arrives on the visitor side, Carroll Sr. High event staff will hand out face coverings and guide the graduate to their personalized seating area where they are to remain until right before the ceremony begins. Graduates will remain in their seated area prior to the ceremony and be guided out to line up by CSHS staff before the processional begins.
    • Guests may begin arriving by 7:00 p.m. and are asked to follow the guidance of event staff to enter the home side gate closest to their parking location. Guests will enter the stadium at one of three entry points on the home side as guided by event staff. Temperature pre-screening (as noted later in the plan) will occur at each entry point gate.


    • Seats in the stadium will be numbered by row and seat, taking into consideration social distancing.
    • Ticket (1 per family) will be pre-printed with a specific row and up to four (4) seat numbers, allowing for space between families not living in the same household. Guests must have tickets to enter the stadium. Anyone who does not pick up tickets by 2 p.m. the day of graduation at CSHS or anyone that loses his/her ticket will be sent to the Will Call window at Dragon Stadium where a CISD staff member will check the graduate’s ticket list against the individual’s picture ID. If the individual’s name is on the list and provides the proper ID, this individual will be given an official temporary ticket (with the same previously assigned row and seat numbers) to enter the stadium.
    • Some families will enter the home side stands and walk to the visitor side seating noted on their ticket. These families with visitor side seating may not park in visitor parking lot. They will park in the home side, enter the home side concourse and be led by a CISD staff member down the steps, across the end zone to the visitor side seats. If guests have health conditions that prevent them from walking even short distances, they should notify the CSHS staff prior to the ceremony date by designating that need on the Senior Survey.
    • Seating capacity for this in-person, outdoor event is as follows and should comply with the Gubernatorial order at the time of the ceremony. 

    Home Side Seating
    25% Capacity – 1,715 maximum

    Visitor Side Seating
    25% Capacity – 806 maximum

    NOTE: It is anticipated that not all graduates will need a total of four (4) ticket. CISD also has up to 100 seats available in the end zone should overflow be necessary. Finally, the Governor has announced he plans to increase capacity to 50% at public venues by May 18. These three factors will help ensure that CISD has capacity flexibility and does not exceed the allowable capacity on May 29, 2020. The district does NOT plan to increase ticket numbers beyond what is described in this plan even if the Governor increases the capacity allowance to 50% occupancy.

    Additional Health Precautions

    Temperature Screening

    • Each graduate, CISD essential staff working the ceremony and security staff will be pre-screened for temperature (via a forehead scan) prior to entering the stadium gates.
    • Guests in the audience will be pre-screened for temperature (via a forehead scan) prior to entering the home side gates.

    IMPORTANT: Anyone with a 100-degree temperature or higher will NOT be permitted to enter the stadium or attend the in-person graduation ceremony.  CISD essential staff and security staff will help enforce the temperature screening requirements as needed.

    Concourse and Restroom attendants
    Carroll ISD will have staff serving as custodial attendants in each restroom and in concourse areas. Each guest will be asked to use the restroom, wash hands thoroughly and then return to their seat. Custodial attendants will then use wipes and cleaning products to disinfect all handles and touched surfaces before being used by another guest. Concourse attendants will remain vigilant in high traffic areas to ensure railings and high touch surfaces are wiped down as guests move throughout the facility to their seats.  Water fountains will be turned off during the service and wiped down regularly by concourse attendants if guests try to use them.

    Use of Gloves
    Security staff and essential staff working the event will wear gloves when their duties involve touching or handing anything to students or guests (i.e. tickets, masks, programs, bottled water, temperature screening, or diplomas).

    Face Coverings

    • Students, Security Staff and Essential CISD Employees working the graduation ceremony will be required to wear a non-medical grade face mask provided by Carroll ISD until they are seated. Once seated the mask can be removed.
    • Graduates may remove the mask before walking across stage to accept their diploma and for their official photograph.
    • Family guests are encouraged, but not required, to bring their own non-medical grade face mask to wear during the ceremony. We encourage you to wear matching family masks, decorate your masks for your graduate and take a picture to post on social media using the #CarrollGrad20 hashtag.

    Hand Sanitizer
    Carroll ISD will provide hand sanitizer at the stadium entrance and at key areas in the concourse. Handwashing stations are available in each restroom. Water fountains will be turned off at the stadium, but bottled water will be available for students and guests. 

    Guests 65 years and older
    Carroll ISD strongly encourages guests over the age of 65 and/or those susceptible or at-risk of contracting COVID-19 to watch the event via live stream, rather than attending the in-person event. There will be no tent for grandparents on the field like previous years. The event will be live-streamed to ensure that those who are not able to attend in person can watch the ceremony live online.

    After the Ceremony

    • Graduates will be asked to exit during the recessional and go straight to their personal vehicles.
    • Families of graduates will not be allowed on the field after the ceremony.
    • All graduates and essential staff working the graduation ceremony will exit the visitor side gate to the visitor side parking lot.
    • All family guests will exit the home side gate as guided by event staff and go directly to their vehicles in the home side parking lot. Those guests sitting in the home stands will be dismissed to their cars first. Those on the visitor side will be dismissed to their cars next.
    • Security staff will help direct traffic out of the stadium.

    Essential Staff needed to work:

    • Parking Lot Security (8) - check for parking tags and to direct cars into parking lots.
    • Ticket Takers/Programs (10) – wear gloves and accept event tickets at gate before handing guests a program.
    • School Nurses (6-8) – stationed at entry points to conduct temperature pre-screening.
    • Will Call (2) – check guest lists/photo IDs for those who lost or forgot tickets to be issued temporary tickets.
    • CSHS Faculty/Counselors (60)– guide graduates to personal standing areas and to help ensure social distancing.
    • Custodial Staff (20) – trash collection and clean up after ceremony.
    • Concourse and Restroom Attendants (10 restrooms/6 concourse) – disinfect and wipe down restroom handles/high touch areas like hand railings after each use.
    • Concourse Security (4) – ensure social distancing, guide guests to seat locations and maintain control.
    • Water Distribution (4) – wear gloves to distribute bottled water as needed
    • Scoreboard Staff (3) – oversee video scoreboard operations
    • Sound Crew (2) – operate sound board/music/microphones
    • Film Crew (4) – film and video event from field floor
    • Live Stream Team (4) – technology/consulting staff to conduct live-stream services
    • CSHS Administration (3) – keep order, oversee safety and present diplomas with gloves
    • School Board/Mayor of Southlake (8) – seated near stage area
    • Superintendent’s Cabinet (5) – keep order, oversee safety