TAHLEQUAH, Okla. – A virtual Sequoyah High School graduation ceremony is being held Friday after careful planning and consideration by Cherokee Nation Public Health, Cherokee Nation Administration and Education Services.

The virtual ceremony will be held Friday, July 31 starting at 5:30 p.m. with graduating seniors only in attendance, and live streamed on Sequoyah Schools’ website for all parents, family and friends to see. Photos from the event will also be posted on Sequoyah Schools’ and Cherokee Nation’s Facebook pages.

“This moment is a milestone for our graduates and a rite of passage they should each get to celebrate as a culmination of their years of achievement and friendships, but we also know that it has to be done differently and safely given the context in which we are immersed in. COVID-19 cases have increased more than 200 percent in the month of July in the Cherokee Nation, and a virtual ceremony accomplishes both these goals for celebration with strict safety measures,” said Principal Chief Chuck Hoskin Jr.

Students are being notified with more details of the virtual graduation ceremony. Masks will be required for each graduate and social distancing measures enforced. Students will be divided into groups of 10 with specific times to be called to walk across the stage, receive a diploma, take pictures and exit. This allows for a small number of students in the room at any given time.

After exiting, students will go directly to their vehicles and celebrate at their own destination. Families can watch the ceremony on live stream to keep each other safe, their children safe, as well as our Cherokee communities. More information will be posted on Sequoyah’s Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/SequoyahSchools/.