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Important Updates for Stratford Middle School 8th Grade Parents - 5/1/20

Dear Parents of Stratford Middle School 8th Grade Students,

As we look toward the end of the school year, CCSD93 is committed to honoring the hard work and growth of each of our graduating 8th graders with a graduation ceremony. We have considered a number of scenarios and have decided to hold digital graduation ceremonies in early June and strive for in-person graduation celebrations in late July. Stratford’s digital graduation ceremony will be held on June 4 at 7 p.m., while the in-person celebration will be entirely optional for families and held July 31 at 7 p.m. 

Please review the following to understand how students will receive their graduation gowns, the opportunities students will have to be highlighted during the digital ceremony, the timing and details of what to expect for the digital ceremony, and plans for the in-person celebration.  

Graduation Supply Pickup: May 18, 2020

Eighth grade students will be invited to visit Stratford on Monday, May 18 between 9 a.m. and 2 p.m. to pick up graduation supplies including gowns, ribbons, yard signs, and any individual awards the student may have earned. The yard signs have been generously provided by the school’s PTA, and we invite you to display it publicly outside of your home for the community to see. 

More details will be sent closer to May 18 regarding specific time windows for visiting the school, but please know considerations will be in place to ensure the health and safety of everyone involved. 

Student Graduation Video or Photo Submission: May 18 - May 21 

In order for students to enjoy a personalized graduation experience, we will invite each student to submit a very brief video or photo, which will be displayed during the graduation ceremony as their name is read, following these guidelines.

Instructions for student photos/videos:

  • Beginning May 18 and concluding May 21, students will be invited to submit a photo or brief video through a Google Form emailed to all parent and 8th grade district email addresses. The form will be sent via email when submissions are first available, and a reminder will be sent the day they are due. 
  • In order to ensure the digital graduation event is completed on time for the ceremony, submissions will not be accepted after the due date.
  • If the student does not submit a photo or video, their yearbook photo will be displayed.
  • Students may submit a video of no more than 5 seconds in length or a photo.
    • The video/photo should be shot in portrait, not landscape.
    • The video/photo should feature the student wearing their graduation gown, ribbon and any medallion the student may have received for an individual award.
    • The video/photo should not feature any inappropriate content. Any file deemed inappropriate will be replaced by the student’s yearbook photo. 
    • If a video is submitted, its audio will not be included.
    • If a video is submitted, it may need to be shortened for timing.

Digital Graduation Ceremony: June 4 at 7 p.m.

CCSD93 will create a digital event that will be posted to YouTube Premiere on June 4 at 7 p.m. Families will be sent a link ahead of time, which will become active June 4 at 7 p.m, so that all can simultaneously view and celebrate a collective graduation. You may forward the link to extended family members so that they can participate as well.  The graduation will consist of the following:

  • Principal Dawson serving as emcee.
  • Traditional graduation speeches given by dignitaries including CCSD93 School Board President Keith Briggs, myself, and Glenbard North Principal Dr. John Mensik. 
  • Teachers reading graduating student names with the submitted images/videos or yearbook photos displayed for each student.

Full student names will be read during the digital ceremony. If you do not wish for your child’s full name to be read during the digital ceremony, please contact Principal Dawson at

In-Person Graduation Celebration: July 31 at 7 p.m. 

In order to provide our students the opportunity to celebrate this noteworthy accomplishment in person, and to walk across a stage to receive their diplomas, we have worked with Glenbard North High School to hold an in-person graduation celebration July 31 at 7 p.m. at the school’s football stadium. This celebration will be entirely optional for our students and their families. 

This is, of course, tentative and dependent upon health and safety recommendations at the time. If we are able to hold such a celebration, considerations will be made to ensure current health and safety recommendations and guidelines are followed. If this event is unable to be held, diplomas will be made available through other methods. Please save the date and look for more information from CCSD93 as the date draws near.

Thank you for collaborating with us to ensure that we celebrate this terrific achievement for each CCSD93 8th grader. If you have additional questions, please reach out to Principal Dawson at


David H. Hill, Ed.D.

Superintendent of Schools