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School leaders in Morgan say commencements possible later in year

By Michael Wetzel  

For the Enquirer 

Commencement ceremonies at state public high schools have been canceled because of the COVID-19 concerns, and Morgan County educational leaders say their hands are tied until at least June 5. 

Decatur City Schools Superintendent Michael Douglas said that doesn’t mean a ceremony for the graduates can’t be held later in the summer. 

“It’s too early to tell,” he said. “It depends on what the Alabama Department of Public Health says about large gatherings. We might be able to have something virtually and then something more formal in the summer before some of the seniors go off to college.” 

Douglas said Austin and Decatur high school commencements were scheduled for May 21. 

Dee Dee Jones, Hartselle City Schools superintendent, said committee has been formed to make a commencement happen. She said a meeting is set for Monday with area superintendents to discuss issues including graduation. 

“The Class of 2020 is missing out on so many things, spring sports, awards day, commencements,” she said. “It’s a very sad time for them.” 

Bill Hopkins, Morgan County Schools superintendent, said he expects some sort of ceremony for the graduates at the county’s five high schools. 

“We’re committed to have some sort of a ceremony for the seniors at some point,” he said. “It might be in the summer or even into the next school year.”