Parents and students react to Killeen ISD’s possible ‘virtual graduation’

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KILLEEN, Texas – These are uncertain times for the graduating class of 2020.

Districts around the country are taking precautions and trying to plan how they’re going to move forward with graduations.

Killeen Independent School District is talking about a possible “virtual graduation” for their graduating seniors.

“We want to make sure we can provide you something else that will be substantial and memorable and also remarkable,” says Taina Maya, KISD Spokesperson, in a Facebook video.

The District says unless things with COVID-19 change, having a physical graduation would pose too many threats.

“It’s very understandable on why they are considering a virtual graduation, but you know, all of us seniors, we have waited for this moment to have a traditional graduation for almost 12-13 years now, and it’s just unfortunate that we have to go through these circumstances right now,” says Benjamin Bosque, Senior at Harker Heights High School.

Killeen ISD parents say they are heartbroken, not only for their seniors, but for all the students who might miss out on such a big event.

“It’s a memory that they are never going to have if they don’t get to walk that stage. I don’t know what the answer is, but I don’t think this is the right approach,” says Marelisa Smith, parent of a Killeen ISD senior.

Smith and other parents hope something else can be done. A Facebook page has been created by parents, to come up with an alternative.

“I wish though, they would try and maybe find a way to still get those kids to walk,” says Alexia Russey, parent of Killeen ISD senior.

For students, it’s a tradition they say they’ll never get back.

“It’s just kind of like, heartbreaking, because a lot of us have been working really hard to get to where we are now. And we’ve been in high school for four years trying to make it through with these people, and we’ve had so much taken away, like prom. I didn’t get to say goodbye to any of my friends, or teachers. It would have been really nice to just have like this last memory of being a high school student,” says Madisson Smith, senior at Harker Heights High School.

“It’s really sad because we’ve worked all four years, like, you know? Everyone expects, ‘I can just walk the stage and I’m done.’ And now it’s like, ‘You don’t get to do that like everyone does before you.’ It’s like really sad, honestly,” says Elena Russey, senior at Harker Heights High School.

Right now, a virtual graduation is not set in stone. The District says if the Governor extends the school closures past May 4th, then they will move forward with this method.

To read our previous story, you can click HERE.

Copyright 2020 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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