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Class of 2020

A Message From Dr. Whitbeck About Graduation


Texas A&M staff have informed Bryan ISD that events through the end of May at Reed Arena have been canceled or postponed.  This affects the graduation ceremonies for Bryan and Rudder High Schools planned at Reed Arena and Bryan Collegiate High School planned at Rudder Auditorium. The MC Harris graduation at the Bryan Performing Arts Center is not affected by this announcement.

With this news, Bryan ISD is now examining all options, including a later graduation date at A&M facilities or possibly using Merrill Green Stadium to create a graduation experience that will be both unique and extra-special for our class of 2020.  Dr. Whitbeck conferenced with senior class officers on Wednesday and will be in continual conversation with them gaining student perspective. They are in touch with their classmates and their positive ideas for new traditions and creativity are inspiring.

All decisions will be based on the further development of the situation surrounding COVID-19 including returning to school, social distancing guidelines, etc. We do know that Bryan ISD seniors will graduate and receive their diploma and our intent will be to create an opportunity for the same reverence and fanfare of any other Bryan ISD graduation ceremony of the past, maybe with some new twists.  Graduation is a time-honored tradition celebrating a major milestone in the lives of these students, and they deserve nothing less than our utmost efforts to provide a special experience for them and their families.


El personal de Texas A&M ha informado a Bryan ISD que los eventos programados hasta finales de mayo en Reed Arena han sido cancelados o pospuestos.  Esto afecta las ceremonias de graduación de las escuelas preparatorias Bryan y Rudder planeadas en Reed Arena y la de la Preparatoria Bryan Collegiate planeada en el Auditorio Rudder. La graduación de               MC Harris en el Centro de Artes Escénicas de Bryan no se ve afectada por este aviso.


Con esta noticia, Bryan ISD está examinando todas las opciones, incluyendo una fecha de graduación más tardía en las instalaciones de A&M o posiblemente usando el estadio Merrill Green para crear una experiencia de graduación que será única y extra especial para nuestra clase de 2020.  La Dra. Whitbeck habló con los representantes superiores de la clase el miércoles y estará en continua conversación con ellos obteniendo la perspectiva de los estudiantes. Ellos están en contacto con sus compañeros de clase y sus ideas positivas para nuevas tradiciones y creatividad son inspiradoras.


Todas las decisiones se basarán en el desarrollo de la situación que rodea a COVID-19, incluyendo el regreso a clases, las pautas de distanciamiento social, etc. Sabemos que los estudiantes en duodécimo grado de preparatoria se graduarán y recibirán su diploma y nuestra intención será crear la misma ceremonia y algarabía de cualquier otra ceremonia de graduación de Bryan ISD del pasado, tal vez con algunos nuevos cambios. La graduación es una tradición que celebra una meta en la vida de estos estudiantes, y ellos merecen nada menos que nuestros esfuerzos para proporcionar una experiencia especial para ellos y sus familias.

Dear Bryan ISD Class of 2020,

I’ve been sending a lot of messages to parents, Bryan ISD staff and the community over the last week, but I wanted to take a moment to write to you personally.

Eight more weeks of school.  After close to 13 years of your life in school, you are down to only eight weeks and a situation unlike any other we’ve experienced has come out of nowhere to disrupt your plans.

You are a special group of students.  Many of you were born shortly after 9/11/2001, so you came into this world during a unique time of both uncertainty and togetherness for our country and the world.  Now, as you prepare to graduate from high school, our country and world are in a similar situation. This tells me your class can withstand difficult times and are surely destined to do great things!

Myself, your principals, teachers and the staff you see every day at school, all feel for you.  This is supposed to be a time of celebration, and it’s being cut short. Activities, competitions, events, are all being canceled right now, and instead of focusing on this special time together, the focus has shifted to staying apart from each other.  We hate that this is happening to you.

Right now, Bryan ISD is still planning to resume classes on April 6.  But, with the number of COVID-19 cases still rising in Brazos County and in Texas, this is very tentative.  The reality is this societal shut-down may stretch on longer. With that in mind, it’s important for you to know we will do everything possible to make these last few weeks and your graduation as special as we possibly can.  For all your hard work, you deserve nothing less.

How that looks, I can’t say right now because the situation is constantly changing. As of today, your graduation ceremonies will continue as planned. In the meantime, I have granted permission for Balfour to contact you and allow you to pick up your cap and gown in a drive up and go format. Be expecting to hear from someone about the details. I have also asked the high school principals for the names and contact info for all senior class officers. I will schedule a Google hangout with them early next week. Please let your school’s senior officers know what your major concerns are and how we can most help you. I will be asking your class leaders for feedback.

You’re going to receive a lot of information over the next few days about online instruction through the beginning of April and even longer if necessary. Please do not take this lightly. Finish the year strong, proudly receive your Bryan ISD diploma, and know we support you and couldn’t be more proud of your accomplishments. Take care and I will be in touch.

Dr. Christie Whitbeck
Bryan ISD Superintendent