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St. Johns County Cancels In-Person Graduation Ceremonies While Clay Holds Out Hope

DC via AP
This illustration provided by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in January 2020 shows the 2019 Novel Coronavirus (2019-nCoV).

While the list of closures and social restrictions grows in hopes of slowing the spread of coronavirus, high school seniors in Clay County have fingers crossed that they’ll get to walk with their classmates this May.

Superintendent David Broskie confirmed Thursday that a graduation ceremony is still a possibility.

“All end of the year activities have been cancelled. We have not—repeat have not—that’s not—cancelled graduation at this point. We’re still looking into that, of course. But right now it’s on,” he said.

That's not the case in neighborhoring St. Johns County where Superintendent Tim Forson confirmed Thursday afternoon that all in-person graduations in his school district have been cancelled.

"Today, I have made the very difficult decision to cancel all traditional high school graduations.  The UNF arena is no longer available and I believe our high schools need to be consistent in how we celebrate the Class of 2020. In addition, COVID-19 could still be a threat into the summer, we simply do not know. Your school will communicate virtual graduation plans as soon as they are finalized," said Forson in a statement.

Related: Local, State, And National Coronavirus Coverage

Broskie said while the switch to distance learning has not been without its glitches, he’s encouraged by the number of students who have been logging into their online classes every day. St. Johns County has also reported glitches in the switch to online learning.

At the time of this story's publication, Clay County had 56 confirmed COVID-19 cases. Six people there have died from the disease. St. Johns County had 94 confirmed cases and two deaths.

Contact reporter Cyd Hoskinson at, 904-358-6351 and on Twitter at @cydwjctnews.

Bill Bortzfield can be reached at, 904-358-6349 or on Twitter at @BortzInJax.

Cyd Hoskinson began working at WJCT on Valentine’s Day 2011.