Ski lift graduation? Educators are trying to help Park City’s Class of 2020 create a memory.
Educators are mulling some creative ideas to prevent Park City High School’s seniors from becoming the class that didn’t have a graduation, including one that caught the attention of Summit County Councilor Roger Armstrong.
“There was some social media conversation at the end of last week about potentially having ski lift graduations,” Armstrong said on a live-streamed question-and-answer session Monday. “I suspect we would still have gatherings at the bottom of lift, gatherings at the top of lift. But I actually scratched my head and thought, you know, that actually sounds like an interesting proposal, assuming that a ski resort wants to figure that out.”
Park City School District spokesperson Melinda Colton said Park City High School was working with a local resort on the idea but that it wasn’t clear if it could happen given the risks of COVID-19.
A representative from Deer Valley Resort said she didn’t have updates to share, while a Park City Mountain Resort representative did not respond to a request for comment.
PCHS Principal Roger Arbabi said he was working on multiple options for an alternate graduation ceremony later this summer, but didn’t have any solid plans on what would be allowed.
“I would like to have a special event that would be unique to Park City and hopefully that would be outside,” Arbabi wrote.
Summit County Health Director Rich Bullough said he had not seen a proposal for a ski lift graduation, but that the idea was not even the most creative he’s fielded. He declined to discuss the others, but said the pandemic has revealed the lengths educators will go for their students.
“(The superintendents and principals) care for their students. They want to provide these kids a memory, and you can’t fault them for that,” Bullough said. “I’ve been very impressed at the level of thought and creativity, but also a ton of integrity — people want to do the right thing. I’ve been very impressed by it.”
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“I think one of the things that really, really, really scares … us is knowing that there are go-to docs that they can send out saying a student or a teacher or a staff member died,” said union co-president Julie Hooker.