Beloit Turner High School Principal Christopher Koeppen speaks to a group of seniors about their upcoming graduation ceremony June 6 at the football stadium. 


Speaking to a group of seniors on the football field last week, Beloit Turner High School Principal Christopher Koeppen said this year’s in-person graduation ceremony will be a new experience for everyone.

The ceremony has been modified to accommodate social distancing and other COVID-19 precautions.

Additionally, high school students soon will be able to receive vaccines through a pop-up clinic.

The school district has formed a partnership with Homecare Pharmacy in Beloit to provide the Pfizer vaccine for students ages 16 to 18. Students younger than 18 will need parental permission.

Families who want to sign up their students must complete a consent form by Friday. Parents of children turning 16 in May are asked to contact the district nurse, Erin Bown.

So far, Koeppen said, most families who declined the vaccine offer have said their children have already been vaccinated or have appointments elsewhere.

The first doses will be available in early May, with second doses coming three weeks later. Depending on how many students register, the vaccination clinic might be held at the high school or Homecare Pharmacy.

The commencement ceremony will tentatively take place at 11 a.m. June 6 at the Turner High School football stadium. In case of inclement weather, the ceremony could be moved to the gymnasium.

Graduates will be seated in the home stands. Families will be seated in groups of four on the football field.

The graduating class will take a “victory lap” around the track before the ceremony for a photo opportunity.

Koeppen said the event will be livestreamed for those who can’t attend. A link will be posted on the school district’s website before the ceremony.

If the event moves indoors, each student will be allowed two guests to allow for social distancing. Students will not be allowed to share seating tickets with anyone else. Preregistered guests will be asked to sign in upon arrival.

The high school also has tweaked prom night, hosting a “Senior Prom-enade” on May 14 with an outdoor picnic, live music and photos of students in formal wear.

The free event is scheduled rain or shine from noon to 4 p.m. at Rotary Botanical Gardens in Janesville. Students must RSVP by Friday to attend and bring a permission slip and photo ID to the event.

Other upcoming activities include a senior lock-in from 8 to 11 p.m. May 13 and a senior awards night at 6 p.m. June 2 in the gymnasium. Each senior will be able to invite up to two guests.


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