It was a hot and sunny Saturday in Atlanta, GA, when Muslim students from Mohamed Schools of Atlanta participated in a socially-distant graduation ceremony.
Typically, senior graduation is held in May for Mohamed Schools but this year, a decision was made to delay the senior graduation to the end of June.
Hitting the world months ago, the COVID-19 pandemic has had a direct impact on many senior graduations, as most schools decided to hold their ceremonies online to honor the restrictions of a nationwide quarantine.
Throughout this country, schools leaders were forced to make tough decisions about how they would continue to celebrate their graduating classes without violating social distant regulations.
Mohamed Schools of Atlanta, GA, decided to postpone their ceremony and hold an online commencement for the public and an on-site commencement for close family and friends.
“The 29th commencement for W.D. Mohammed High School will be very different from all of our other commencements. It will be streamed online, no onsite space for fans and supporters. Please join us via Facebook Live,” Mohamed Schools of Atlanta shared in a Facebook post.
Originally, Mohamed Schools of Atlanta planned on hosting a drive-through graduation ceremony during the last week of May. The event was planned to honor the seniors and respect social distance guidelines. However, a last minute decision was made to cancel this event and proceed with a delayed graduation.
This decision intended to adequately honor the hard working students with a graduation in the outside parking of the school. Strict six feet guidelines were enforced throughout the ceremony.
The school invested in family tents for each Graduate’s attending family members. These tents were held six feet apart and allowed for family members to attend the graduation. Each graduate was instructed to wear a mask and stand six feet away for one another.
What about other local schools?
Islamic schools faced a tough decision to delay graduations or conduct fully online commencements for their students.
Although Mohamed Schools decided to proceed with a restricted commencement, other local Islamic schools opted for holding an online ceremony.
Al-Falah Academy, located in Gwinnett County, GA, graduates a senior class annually.
However, they made a tough decision this year to offer a commencement program online via Zoom.
In addition to their digital commencement program, they surprised each senior with a visit from the entire teaching staff. Each senior was offered gifts, balloons, and car hunks that could be heard miles away.
Book A Muslim, a booking, marketing & management agency for Muslim speakers & artists, held a virtual graduation one month ago.
This event featured well known speakers and prominent figures, such as Dalia Mohamed and Mahmoud Abdur Rauf. Each celebrity named senior graduates and offered words of wisdom for students navigating this difficult time.