SAN ANGELO, Texas — The San Angelo Independent School District has made the decision to cancel all in-person graduation ceremonies for the Class of 2020.
In a statement on its website, the school district said the decision is to keep San Angelo in the best position possible from a public health standpoint.
Here is the district's full statement:
"After discussions with our local health officials and in response to statements by Governor Abbott and city leaders, San Angelo ISD has made the difficult decision to cancel our in-person graduation events for the Class of 2020 scheduled for June 26th and 27th in an attempt to keep San Angelo in the best position possible from a public health standpoint.
“While it is with heavy hearts that we make this decision, it is necessary to help protect the health of our students and the multigenerational family members who are at an increased risk,” said SAISD Superintendent Dr. Carl Dethloff. “As the father of a graduating senior, this decision is one I don’t take lightly. Our seniors have endured hardship and struggle as their senior year has been stripped from them by a global pandemic. We also know that through perseverance and resilience, their hopes and dreams will be realized.”
Governor Abbott said Monday that “COVID-19 is now spreading at an unacceptable rate in Texas and must be corralled.” Since Monday, June 15th, San Angelo and Tom Green County have seen a 69% spike in COVID-19 cases. All Texans are encouraged to follow the safety protocols given by the Governor’s team of medical experts, which includes staying at home if you are sick or at risk, sanitizing your hands, social distancing, and wearing face coverings or masks.
One of our goals in San Angelo ISD is to sustain a safe and secure environment. We want to do our part to keep the people of San Angelo healthy, out of the hospital, and reduce future business closures that could significantly impact our community. For this reason, it was determined that holding an in-person ceremony, even with added health and safety precautions and social distancing, would not be in the best interest of our students, families, staff, and the general public.
We thank you for your continued support and cooperation as we ensure all members of the San Angelo community stay safe and healthy."