Cache County School District more than pleased with how school year has played out so far

FILE PHOTO - school busses line up next to a school in the Cache County School District. Photo courtesy of the Cache County School District

NORTH LOGAN – It’s been a little more than 13 months since schools were shut down across America and learning shifted from in-person to online only. Over the summer of 2020, the Cache County School District made the decision to prepare schools and new protocols to have students and faculty back in the classroom for the upcoming school year. District Public Information Officer Tim Smith says it was a challenging decision to make, but his district is so happy they did it.

“I remember a meeting very vividly,” Smith recalls, “where we talked about driving a stake in the ground and saying, ‘We believe the best place for students is in school. And we believe we can pull that off Monday through Friday on a little bit of a modified schedule, but for the most part the same schedule, but stick to the same calendar year.’

“At the time that was kind of a bold move on the part of the district because we didn’t know a lot about what we would be facing going into the school year, but we felt we had the ability to pull that off. It was a leap of faith. Now, looking back, we’re so glad that was a decision we made early on because we believe our students have fared very well.”

Smith acknowledges it has come with some challenges – having to ask students and faculty to wear masks all the time, having extra hygiene, quarantine and contract tracing protocols, to name a few – but the district has not experienced levels of learning loss like some other districts around the country which kept their students out of school.

It has taken more than just the efforts of the district to make it work. Smith praises faculty, staff, parents and especially students for all doing their part to not only manage the school year during a pandemic, but also to do their part to help drive numbers down.

“We had three school dances (last) weekend and we actually tested over 2,000 students in preparation for those dances,” Smith explains. “We did not have a single positive COVID case in those over 2,000 tests that we had for students. So, we felt pretty comfortable letting them go and have a dance and feel good about it.”

The dances were the first school-sanctioned dances since February 2020.

As the school year is coming to a close, schools are finalizing plans for graduation. Normally, the district works with Utah State University to use the Spectrum for graduation ceremonies but it will not be available this year due to ongoing COVID-19 protocols at the university. Smith says some schools will do something similar to what was done last year, with virtual graduation ceremonies.

“There were a lot of things with last spring’s graduation that parents and students appreciated so we’re trying to replicate those things this spring as well. We’re very excited about graduation.”

Earlier this week the district announced the dates and plans each school has for graduation:

  • Cache High
    • Graduation ceremony on May 25th at 1 p.m. at Castle Manor.
    • Two tickets per student allowed.
  • Ridgeline High School
    • Graduation ceremony on May 25th at 6 p.m. in the school’s auditorium.
      • The event will be for students only but will be live-streamed.
    • Personal Graduation Moments will be May 26th and 27th from 7-9 p.m. on the school’s football field. Graduates will be assigned a date and time to walk the stage and receive a diploma. Parents and family invited.
    • Graduation Finale on May 27th at 9 p.m. on the school’s football field. This will be a celebration for all graduates with fireworks at dusk.
  • Mountain Crest High School
    • Senior Graduation Assembly on May 26th at 9 a.m. in the school’s auditorium.
      • The event will be for students only but will be live-streamed.
    • Graduation Walk on May 27th from 2-9 p.m. in the school’s auditorium.
      • This will be an open house format for students to attend with family. Students need to sign up for their time slot.
    • Senior Celebration on May 27th from 9:30-11 p.m. on the school’s football field.
  • Sky View High School
    • A traditional graduation ceremony will take place on May 26th at 3 p.m. at the school’s football field
  • Green Canyon High School
    • Graduation ceremony on May 26th from 4-7 p.m. and on May 27th from 1-4 p.m. in the school’s auditorium
      • This will be an open house format for students to attend with parents and family.
    • Senior Graduation Assembly on May 27th from 5-6 p.m. at the school’s football field
      • This is for students only. Fireworks will follow at dusk.

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