Tips for Planning a Successful Graduation Ceremony

Tips for Planning a Successful Graduation Ceremony
  • Opening Intro -

    Graduation is right around the corner, and there's a possibility that you can provide your successful seniors with an almost-normal ceremony that will hold a special place in their hearts.


This year’s high school seniors have had it tougher than any other class and deserve a flawless graduation ceremony as a reward for the hardships they’ve experienced. When it’s your job to make sure that all goes well before and during the ceremony, take these tips for planning a successful graduation ceremony into consideration as you begin preparations.

Stream the Ceremony Online

Not everyone will feel comfortable with attending a physical graduation ceremony—and with potential occupancy restrictions, not everyone may be able to attend.

Many schools have already begun to stream their graduation ceremonies online in previous years; bring your school up to date this year by providing families with a safe, socially distant option to watch their child walk the stage.

Invest in a high-quality stream so that everyone can make out their senior’s face as though they were actually there.

Secure the Event Well

This year more than any other, your ceremony will need adequate security. Security may need to conduct temperature checks and maintain any mask regulation you have in place.

Remember to inform students and their families about any rules for the ceremony in advance—you don’t want parents to be surprised by restrictions at the gate.

If you’re hosting the event or the rehearsals at the school, don’t slack on school security because it’s after-hours or after the school year ends. Keep your security technology up to date, and prepare the security team for tighter safety regulations than usual.

Add Something Special to the Ceremony

The pandemic and the past year’s events have likely affected many of the students who attend your school. Respect families impacted by COVID-19 by adding a memorial somewhere in the ceremony—you may add names to the projected slideshow, create a video, or have a moment of silence.

If possible, organize the school’s band or choir to perform a song. Taking time to recognize the impact of the year will make the ceremony emotional and memorable for all who attend.

Promote Student Participation

Your valedictorian and salutatorian shouldn’t be the only students allowed to participate in the ceremony. Involve the entire senior student body by involving them in aspects of the ceremony—have them vote on a senior song, send in baby photos, and have clubs create a slide for a pre-event slideshow.

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The more a graduation ceremony feels like a school community event, the more invested your student body will become in attending and paying attention to the ceremony.

The most important tip for planning a successful graduation ceremony is to show meaningful appreciation to your graduating senior class—they’ve worked hard this year to reach their goals, and the school wouldn’t be the same without them.

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