Minico plans May 21 public graduation ceremony

Despite a state directive on public gatherings, Minico High School will hold a public graduation ceremony next week.

“We talked about the options and the implications of this,” Minidoka County School District Superintendent Ken Cox told Laurie Welch of the Twin Falls Times-News.

After spending weeks discussing their options, school staff decided to schedule the graduation ceremony for May 21. It will be held on the Rupert high school’s football field.

Minico’s decision and timetable defy Idaho Rebounds — Gov. Brad Little’s four-stage plan to reopen the state in the wake of the coronavirus outbreak. Idaho could move into stage two of the plan later this week — but even that stage discourages public and private gatherings of 10 or more people.

With that in mind, the State Board of Education last week said public schools could not reopen classrooms to 10 or more people.

A gathering such as Minico’s graduation could take place during the fourth stage of the Idaho Rebounds plan. But Idaho won’t move into this stage until June 13 — and only if the state avoids a spike in coronavirus cases between now and then.

Referring to a May 21 ceremony for 190 graduating seniors, Cox told the Times-News, “I know the governor’s guidance of not having groups of more than 10 is not going to be met.”

As of Saturday, Minidoka County has 11 confirmed or probable coronavirus cases.

Kevin Richert

Kevin Richert

Senior reporter and blogger Kevin Richert specializes in education politics and education policy. He has more than 30 years of experience in Idaho journalism. He is a frequent guest on "Idaho Reports" on Idaho Public Television and "Idaho Matters" on Boise State Public Radio. Follow Kevin on Twitter: @KevinRichert. He can be reached at [email protected]

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