b'28 2019-2020 | ANNUAL REPORT 2019-2020 | ANNUAL REPORT 29CONVOCATION AND COVID-19 COLLGE JEANNE-SAUVCelebrating Students During a PandemicAs part of its graduation celebrations, teachers and staff created a video of themselves singing to the St. Vital-These are unprecedented times. I think we could agree that weve heard those four words more times in 2020 than mostbased schools class of 2020 graduates. The song of of us have heard in our entire lifetimes. Overused? Possibly. Accurate? Absolutely. While the pandemic has impacted allchoiceRandy Newmans Youve got a friend in mewas of us in small and big ways, for this years graduating class, it has been especially challenging. In the Louis Riel Schoola fitting one. Weve been working very hard with the Division (LRSD), convocation took place in eight high schools and while the goal of each was the same, the celebrationsstudents to keep the connection with all of our Grade looked much different in previous years. In some cases, these events had similar themes and inspirations, but in all12s, said Alain Michalik, principal, who was speaking on cases, these graduations were characterized by each school community coming together, breaking with tradition whenthe eve of three days of physically distanced convocation necessary, thinking outside the box, and facing the challenges of the current climate to hold unique, creative celebrationsceremonies at the school. We wanted to provide that should live on in our collective memory forever. students with a bit of a choice. Michalik said students could choose whether to graduate with friends or individually, which determined which day they attended COLLGE BLIVEAU convocation, and they were each allowed a specific number of guests in line with provincial health guidelines. He added that students were invited to pick up their gowns to take pictures with family members. When the students came in for that week, it was difficult for them not be with their friends, but there were smiles on their faces, he said, noting this also gave them the chance to At Collge Bliveau, Gilles Mousseau, principal, was happysituation for our graduates, Mousseau said, noting there see teachers and staff members. Of course, well miss the about how the school community came together for itswas slightly less than 100 graduating students this year, other events, such as the supper and the dance, but we graduation celebrations. We have a very good graduationwho graduated in four groups. Its important that ourhave to be realistic and understand the new reality were team that met on a regular basis to try to make the bestgraduates were able to celebrate with their friends. living through right now. This has been a real eye-opener We wanted it to be as memorable as possible. Mousseau saidfor everyonenever in my wildest dreams did I think wed the physically distanced ceremonies were well-choregraphedbe living through something like this. If we work together affairs, with parents guided in by staff. Creating a memorableas a team, we can accomplish the same things and make occasion for everyone involved in the process was a keythe best of any situation, said Michalik.message from the Windsor Park-based schools principal.I dont necessarily remember the graduation of 2014 or 2015, but I will certainly remember the graduation of 2020. Depending on the reaction of the students and their parents, we might incorporate some of these new ideas in the future, he said. Mousseau has known some of his students sinceIF WE WORK TOGETHER AS A TEAM, elementary school and said that being a Grade 7 to 12 school means that the relationships formed with students over thisWE CAN ACCOMPLISH THE SAME period of time is significant. Sometimes, the students will come and thank you for making time for them, and theseTHINGS AND MAKE THE BEST OF pieces of grad can be quite emotional. Its nice to share this occasion, and the importance of it, with them. OurANY SITUATION. staff is very attuned to our studentsits about relationship, relationship, relationship. Its not unusual for them to go- ALAIN MICHALIKabove and beyond. As part of the celebrations, teachers and staff also delivered life-sized cardboard cutouts of Mousseau to students for their lawns.'