Dear Parents of the Class of 2020,
Congratulations! The time has come to film the Commencement ceremony for your son. This letter provides instructions on how to prepare for and mark the wonderful moment in time when your son receives his Haverford School diploma, which we will capture on film to be included in the Commencement ceremony that will be released at 2 p.m. on Friday, June 5 on our celebratory Class of 2020 webpage: haverford.org/Classof2020.
These instructions must be followed exactly. There are no deviation, additions, or subtractions allowed. We are on a very tight schedule and are operating under health restrictions and instructions that will be enforced by the Township. Violations will result in your son not receiving his diploma on the Centennial Hall stage, and may shut this opportunity down for everyone, so please pay careful attention.
Sign up for your son's time to walk across the Centennial Hall stage here. Include the names of the two people who will be presenting his diploma, in this format: "his mother Elvira Doolittle, and his father, James Brown of The Haverford School Class of 1984." Please indicate the relationship of each person to your son. Stepfather, stepmother, friend, brother, uncle -- you can mark this milestone with whichever two people you choose. If either or both of the people awarding your son his diploma are Haverford School graduates, please indicate the year they graduated. The words you write are the words that Associate Headmaster Brian McBride or I will read as your son is walking across the stage toward you. "Elvis Swivel Presley is being given his diploma by his mother, Elvira Doolittle, and his father, James Brown of The Haverford School Class of 1984."
Your son should dress in grey slacks, white dress shirt, Haverford School tie, and black shoes, socks, and belt. You should dress up in the clothes you wish to wear when you appear on camera giving him his diploma. You will be on camera! There will no restroom facilities available (you'll only be on campus for about 30 minutes total), so make sure that you complete any personal grooming prior to leaving your car. Your son will receive his blazer upon arrival in Centennial Hall.
ARRIVAL TIME, PROTOCOL, AND RUN OF SHOW
Arrive at The Haverford School 20 minutes before your scheduled time. Park in the Red Lot off of the Railroad Avenue entrance, using every other spot, as directed by security. Please have your son's name written in large letters on a piece of paper in your windshield. All three of you must remain in your car until a security officer approaches and tells you to report to the medical tent to have your temperature taken. You and your son must wear masks and gloves the entire time you are on campus with the exception of the time your son is actually walking across the Centennial Hall stage toward you. If you or anyone in your party have a fever, you will not be allowed to proceed into Centennial Hall. If you have more than three people in your party, including your son, you will not be allowed to proceed into Centennial Hall.
Deposit any spring athletic uniforms in the cart in front of Centennial Hall. You will be given your maroon blazer in the lobby. Enter Centennial Hall through the right set of doors. Brian McBride or I will confirm names and pronunciations inside Centennial Hall; please remain at a safe social distance from us and keep your masks on. Proceed down the stairway to the stage. Your son will remain on the right side of the stage as the audience sees him (stage left); his diploma presenters will walk to the other side of the stage (stage right). There will be tape markers to indicate where to stand. When Brian or I say "Clear," all three of you remove your masks and gloves and put them in your pockets. Our videographer will provide a cue and your son will walk across the stage toward you as Brian or I announce "Elvis Swivel Presley is being given his diploma by his mother, Elvira Doolittle, and his father, James Brown of The Haverford School Class of 1984."
Your son will receive his diploma from his presenters. There will be hugs, and tears, all captured on film. You will pose for a still picture. All three of you will then put your masks and gloves back on and proceed to the back of the stage (stage left rear -- follow the arrow!) through the loading dock door to receive your Jefferson Cup, and thence to the parking lot, which you will promptly depart. After exiting you must proceed to your car and leave immediately. Please do not linger for pictures, or to greet other people.
These procedures may seem excessive, but they are in accordance with guidance issued by Lower Merion Township and intended to ensure the safety of all. Members of the Haverford School staff are risking their health to give you and your son the best experience we can in the circumstances in which we find ourselves. This is deadly serious; we had a construction worker on the new Middle School test positive for COVID-19 last week. While we have sanitized the Middle School work site and will be regularly cleaning all surfaces with which you are likely to come in contact, we do not recommend that people with underlying health conditions or compromised immune systems be diploma presenters; some 350 people will pass through Centennial Hall over the course of filming in addition to the construction workers nearby. If you choose not to participate, are late for your scheduled time, or violate any of the instructions in this letter, there will be a still photograph of your son in his blazer in the Commencement video, and we will deliver his diploma to you.
Please go to the Sign Up Genius NOW to reserve your time for this experience of a lifetime that marks the completion of this phase of your son's Haverford School journey. Please also continue to follow Form VI Fridays on the Haverford School's Facebook page, the all-new Form VI highlights on the Haverford School's Instagram page, and the Class of 2020 webpage, which we will continually update with information and celebration -- including, eventually, plans for an in-person gathering to celebrate the accomplishments of this wonderful class, which will happen as soon as the authorities give us permission to gather in person.