By James Hanlon
Leader Staff Writer
Last Wednesday, May 5 was the seniors’ last day at Oxford High School. They woke up dark and early to watch the sunrise over Wildcat Stadium. The Class of 2021 enjoyed a last breakfast together and picked up their caps and gowns.
During the last hour of the shortened school day, back on the football field, the seniors watched an emotional slideshow showcasing their time in high school. After the video, they took the traditional “victory lap” for the Senior Clap-Out, exiting the campus for the last time as OHS students, cheered on by their classmates and teachers.
“The annual Senior Clap-Out ended an emotional last full day for our seniors,” the OHS administration said. “While this year was a bit different, we were happy they were able to share time together – viewing the Senior Slideshow and taking their ‘victory lap.’
“We continue to be amazed at the talents, kindness, perseverance, and overall sprit of the Class of 2021. We look forward to seeing them again soon to celebrate their uniqueness, accomplishments, and bright futures they have ahead of them.”
Also on Cinco de Mayo, a mariachi band showed up in a very unexpecting Principal Wolf’s office – a surprise planned by the seniors.
Next up, the Baccalaureate Ceremony for this year’s graduating class will take place at the Legacy 925 (Legacy Center) in the restaurant area, May 16 at 6:30 p.m. Unrelated to the International Baccalaureate program, participation in this non-denominational religious service is voluntary and is open to all students with senior standing and their families. This year’s Keynote Speaker is Pastor Don Jackson from Oakwood Community Church.
The seniors can then look forward to the academic awards night Monday, May 17 at 6:30 p.m. in the Performing Arts Center. Due to capacity limits, only Senior Award recipients will be allowed to attend. Families and friends will be able to view the ceremony via live stream.
In place of prom, there will be a formal “senior celebration” with the theme “A Night in Old Hollywood” May 19 from 7 to 9:30 p.m. at Wildcat Stadium. The OHS senior-only event will include dinner, entertainment, and activities, but it will not be a traditional dance. The event will have a 300-student capacity limit.
The commencement rehearsal has been cancelled. “In order to remain consistent with our goal of providing every effort to give our students and families the ability to manage their interactions with others and avoid possible quarantine from milestone events – we are officially cancelling our commencement rehearsal for most of our students,” school officials said in a Class of 2021 newsletter. “While measures would be in place to mitigate any close contacts, we do not want to place students at potential risk during transportation to and from DTE.”
There will still be a limited rehearsal on May 18 for students who are speaking or performing at the graduation ceremony.
Commencement will be at DTE Energy Music Theater 7774 Sashabaw Rd. in Clarkston, at 7p.m. on Thursday, May 20. Each graduate will be allotted up to four guest tickets for the ceremony, DTE announced last week. “We will be working with DTE on the specific tracing requirements and distribution options – as well as finalizing required safety regulations. We will convey the full details and protocol logistics in the week ahead,” the newsletter stated.
A senior all-night party will follow graduation, from 10:30 p.m. to 5 a.m. at Legacy 925. The parent-planned event will include unlimited access to Urban Air, Laser Tag, Go-karts, sports area, arcade games, DJ/Dancing, food throughout the evening and raffle with many prizes.
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Oxford Schools Early College (OSEC) Capstone Night will be at 5 p.m. May 27 at OHS.
Oxford Bridges High School Graduation will be at 6 p.m. May 27 at the OHS Performing Arts Center.
Oxford Virtual Academy’s Graduation will be at 6 p.m. June 2 at the OHS Performing Arts Center.
The last day of school for the district is June 11.
By James Hanlon