Graduation lead
. Image Credit: Shutterstock

After a year of virtual celebrations, schools in Dubai are gearing up to hold in-person commencement ceremonies to honour the achievements of the class of 2021.

Last week, Dubai’s Knowledge and Human Development Authority (KHDA) announced that graduation ceremonies for Dubai private school students finishing high school can go ahead this year, provided they keep in line with specific health and safety protocols.

Last year, while schools were forced to cancel in-person graduation ceremonies due to the pandemic, they looked for innovative ways to celebrate the occasion virtually.

Caps, gowns and honour cords

Graduation is a moment of joy and pride for students and parents alike and this year, schools in the UAE are determined to go the extra mile to make this occasion special and memorable for students and their families.

The American School of Dubai plans to honour 156 graduates of the Class of 2021 with an in-person commencement ceremony tomorrow at La Perle in Habtoor City.

“The ceremony will follow KHDA’s social distancing guidelines and safety measures,” says Dr Becky Berg, its Interim Superintendent.

“A recording of this monumental occasion and a special video presentation will be shared with the greater ASD community through ASD TV so that the extended family and friends will also have the opportunity to celebrate this occasion.”

Earlier this week, the Class of 2021 donned their caps and gowns for the traditional — and socially-distanced — parade. “The senior students were welcomed to the campus and took their final pass through the halls of ASD before graduation. Afterwards, students returned to their Advisory Classes for the virtual Senior Awards Assembly where students were recognised for excellence in the areas of academics, service, and leadership,” adds Dr Berg.

Elsewhere in Abu Dhabi, The American Community School has taken a unique initiative to ensure that the graduating students enjoy their moment in the spotlight.

“We are building on a new tradition that was born last year out of the pandemic and one we hope to continue for years to come. 92 larger-than-life banners of each senior in their cap and gown have been mounted along the length of the school’s exterior wall from the elementary school gate to the high school gate,” says Monique Flickinger, its Superintendent.

“ACS is proud to share with the Abu Dhabi community the next generation of global citizens ready to make a difference. Each banner is hung in a very special order beginning with the 11 students who arrived at ACS in their kindergarten year through to those who joined us in high school.

“Additionally, its ACS website prominently features a dedicated ‘Celebrating our Seniors’ section, giving our 2021 graduates a meaningful space for our entire community to share in the celebration and wish them well in their next chapter.”