2020 Graduation Ceremony Information

Class of 2020 Graduation Ceremony Schedule


Our plan is to proceed with in-person graduation as planned at Shotwell Stadium. However, we are constantly evaluating the health situation in our city related to the COVID-19 pandemic and will be making a decision later this week about continuing with our plan or moving to alternate in-person ceremonies. We will make that decision by 5 p.m. Friday
(July 10) and communicate that with students, parents, staff and the community.


We request all guests review all of the protocols and procedures and help us make this an orderly and memorable event for the 2020 graduating seniors. We’ve provided tickets to every possible guest. Notice the tickets have an assigned arrival time, parking location, gate entry, and specific seating area. It is expected that the ticket holder will follow these instructions. Guests have been assigned a parking lot nearest their entrance and assigned a specific seating area. Each graduate was assigned a set of 10 seats unless less were requested. It is assumed your guests are from the same household, but as a precaution guests will be required to wear masks.

Please feel free to bring a stadium seat and umbrella (to block sun or run) for the ceremony. However, we would ask that if it’s not raining you put your umbrellas away when the ceremony begins.


This is an optional event and requires the cooperation of every guest. Your cooperation will ensure a safe, orderly and encouraging celebration of our graduates. Please bring your screener form (attached to your ticket), maintain social distancing guidelines, wear your masks, and stay in your seats unless it is an absolute necessity to leave.


 All ceremonies will be live-streamed on AISD-TV Facebook page and will later be available
on AISD-TV Vimeo page and on the City of Abilene’s Public Access channel.

Friday, July 17
9:30 p.m.

Shotwell Stadium

Saturday, July 18
8:30 a.m.

Shotwell Stadium

Saturday, July 18
9:30 p.m.

Shotwell Stadium

The following items are prohibited within Shotwell Stadium:

  • Air horns / noisemakers
  • Balloons
  • Banners
  • Flowers
  • Food / Drink
  • Laser Pointers
  • Weapons
  • Signs larger than 2×2

Graduation Ceremony FAQs


Q: Are face coverings required?

A: Yes. We are mandating face coverings (masks that cover the mouth and nose) for every guest and graduate. Abilene ISD employees will be provided with a mask that will be worn at all times.


Q: Will the ceremonies be live-streamed?

A: Yes. For those who can’t make it to any of the three ceremonies in person, they will be able to watch the ceremony of their choosing on the AISD-TV Facebook page (https://www.facebook.com/aisdtv/), as well as on the AISD Facebook page (https://www.facebook.com/abileneisd/). A few days after the ceremonies have ended, they will be available to watch on the AISD-TV Vimeo page (https://vimeo.com/aisd) and will also be available at select times on the City of Abilene’s Public Access Channel (channel 2 on Suddenlink).


Q: How will parking be handled?

A: Parking lot assignments are on the graduation ticket. Please use your ticket as your guide for your assigned parking lot, entry gate and time of arrival.


Q: What time will Shotwell Stadium gates open?

A: Each ticket has an arrival time for each ticket-holder to adhere to in order to ensure a safe and quick entry.


Q: What are the graduate guidelines?

A: All graduates in each ceremony must follow these guidelines:

  • Decorations are NOT allowed on caps
  • Tassels will be worn on the right side of the cap
  • Due to the turf at Shotwell Stadium, we ask that heels are not worn for safety reasons
  • Graduates are to adhere to the Abilene ISD dress code (flip flops are NOT allowed)
  • Cell phones must be turned off and not visible during the ceremony. No additional items will be permitted on the field.


Q: What are guest guidelines?

A: Guests are expected to adhere to Abilene ISD signage regarding medical self-screening of COVID-19 symptoms and when in any line they are expected to maintain at least six feet of social distancing. Also, guests of graduates are expected to sit together in reserved seats.


Q: Is food allowed inside Shotwell Stadium?

A: No outside food or drink is allowed into Shotwell Stadium. Bottled water will be given to each guest as they enter the stadium. Graduates will also have water made available to them at their stadium check-in location.


Q: What is the inclement weather plan?

A: Every effort will be made to hold each ceremony at its scheduled time. However, in the event that one of the ceremonies is postponed by weather and the other two ceremonies are able to take place in their scheduled time slots, the postponed commencement ceremony will move to 8:30 p.m. on Sunday, July 19.


Q: Will handicap seating be provided?

A: Yes, handicap-accessible seating was assigned when tickets were requested. When guests receive their tickets, if the person’s name that needs handicap-accessible seating isn’t on the correct ticket, feel free to switch tickets with another family member as needed. For every handicap-accessible ticket requested, one additional family member has been assigned to sit with them in the handicap-accessible section. Handicap-accessible seating is limited.


Q: May I bring a camera or recording device into the ceremony?

A: Yes, cameras and recording devices are allowed. However, tripods and other professional equipment is prohibited. Camera and equipment (including cords) are now allowed in aisles or walkways.


Q: What is the procedure for exiting the stadium?

A: At the end of the graduation ceremony, please exit down the same ramp and out through the same gate that you entered. Remember to continue social distancing practices as you exit.


Q: Can we gather outside the stadium following the graduation ceremony?

A: Congregation of groups after the ceremony is not allowed. Graduates and their families will continue their celebration – including taking photographs – at home.


Q: What sanitizing practices will be in place?

A: Hand sanitizing stations will be available at entrances and throughout Shotwell Stadium. The stadium will be disinfected between ceremonies.