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Class of 2021 Commencements June 2, 3

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Class of 2021 Commencements June 2, 3
Posted on 05/07/2021
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(Updated 5/21/21) The Portland Public Schools’ three high schools – Portland, Deering and Casco Bay – will hold in-person commencement ceremonies on June 2 and 3 for the approximately 500 graduating seniors in the Class of 2021. However, now that the capacity limits at Merrill Auditorium have been increased in accordance with new COVID-related guidance from the state, Portland High School will hold its graduation ceremony at that indoor venue. Deering and Casco Bay high schools’ plans remain unchanged.The graduation ceremony schedule is as follows:

      147th  Deering High School Graduation: Wednesday, June 2, 11 a.m., Memorial Field (Rain date, Friday, June 4, 11 a.m., Memorial Field)

      200th Portland High School Graduation: Thursday, June 3, 11 a.m., Merrill Auditorium

      13th Casco Bay High School Graduation: Thursday, June 3, 6 p.m., Merrill Auditorium

In addition, Portland Adult Education (PAE) will hold its graduation ceremony on June 24 at 6 p.m. at Merrill Auditorium for PAE graduates who have attained a high school diploma or passed the HiSET test (formerly GED).

Depending on the school, graduates will be allowed to invite a set number of family members/supporters. Each school will be communicating further details, expectations and guidelines regarding health and safety in advance of the ceremonies to students and families to ensure understanding and compliance.

“Last year’s graduations showed us that the venue or modality is less important than the joy and togetherness of the experience,” said Superintendent Xavier Botana. “In this hardest of years, I am looking forward to sharing similar joyful experiences this June with our resilient students and the Portland community.”

Botana continued: “The Class of 2021 has a lot to celebrate. This class didn’t let COVID stop them from realizing outstanding achievements this past year in academics, athletics and other activities. Now, the majority of the class is headed to institutions of higher learning that include elite colleges and universities all across the country and in Maine. And they’ll attend with the aid of millions of dollars in scholarships and grants. The Class of 2021 is prepared and empowered for a promising future, and we look forward to seeing all they’ll continue to accomplish.”

The ceremonies will also be filmed and professionally photographed, and video and photographs will be available to students and families at a later date.

The Portland Public Schools is Maine’s largest school district, with 6,750 students this year, and is also the most diverse. About one-third of the district’s students – 35 percent – come from homes where languages other than English are spoken—a total of more than 60 languages. About 53 percent of the district’s students are white and 47 percent are students of color. Approximately half of PPS students qualify for free or reduced school lunch.