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St. Amant graduating seniors enter The Pit field, many wearing special Gator masks, for their 2020 commencement. Outdoor graduation ceremonies will be held at each of the parish's four high school this year.

The Ascension Parish public schools system has launched an end-of-year safety campaign aimed at graduating high school students and their parents, reminding them to “Don’t Let One Bad Decision Decide Your Future” by not drinking and driving, avoiding drugs and following COVID guidelines.

The campaign is managed by the school district’s Student Services Office and is co-sponsored by Capital Area Human Services and the Ascension Parish Sheriff’s Office. The campaign includes video messaging on social media platforms, area billboards, school banners, electronic postings and a direct-mail postcard to the homes of graduating seniors from Ascension Parish Sheriff Bobby Webre.

“This time of year is filled with so many great moments of celebration and recognition, and we want to ensure that we all take a moment to pause, think, and remain smart. This is a season that should leave us with happy and special memories, not tragic memories. The ‘Celebrate Safely Ascension’ campaign is a friendly reminder to all our students, parents, and community members that we should always be mindful to protect friends and ourselves by celebrating responsibly,” said Superintendent David Alexander.

“The effort of everyone to overcome the obstacles that existed in this challenging year should truly be embraced, saluted and celebrated. Wise and mature decision-making isn’t an obstacle to fun times and festive events. I am sure everyone agrees that our commitment to good decision-making best ensures that we avoid unnecessary tragedies, finishing the year safely so that we are all able to look forward to future successes and future celebrations.”

Alexander noted that all four high schools in the parish could not host school-sponsored prom events this year due to COVID-19 guidelines. However, the four high schools are committed to hosting in-person graduation ceremonies with safety guidelines in place, similar to last year.

Graduation ceremonies for each high school will be held in outdoor stadiums (weather permitting). Guest attendance at each ceremony will be dependent upon COVID-19 guidelines at the time of the ceremonies. The dates of the events are:

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• Dutchtown High: 7 p.m., Wednesday, May 12

• St. Amant High: 7 p.m., Thursday, May 13

• Donaldsonville High: 7 p.m., Friday, May 14

• East Ascension High: 7 p.m., May 14

The 30-second informational video for the campaign is posted at youtu.be/2yQbp77xoDQ.