MARS, Pa. (KDKA) – Mars Area High School will be holding a graduation ceremony where everyone except the graduates will have to stay in their cars.

Principal Lindsay Rosswog released information about the modified graduation ceremony, saying a traditional graduation isn’t possible because of the state’s restriction on large gatherings.

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A letter to families says the ceremony and walk will be held in the high school parking lots on June 12 at 6 p.m. with a rain date of June 13.

All graduates will be assigned one parking spot for one vehicle each, and all vehicles must be parked by 5:50 p.m. The plan requires all vehicles to be parked in their assigned spot until the 2-hour ceremony is over.

Aside from staff, graduates will be the only ones allowed outside, the letter says.

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Social distancing will be maintained at all times, the letter goes on to say, except for when an administrator comes within six feet of a student to give them a diploma.

Butler County is currently in the “red” phase of Gov. Wolf’s reopening plan and is under a stay-at-home order. In the “yellow” phase, the stay-at-home order is lifted, and large gatherings of more than 25 are prohibited. Gov. Wolf is expected to announce when the southwest region is moving to the yellow phase “soon.”

The coronavirus is forcing high schools to get creative with how they celebrate the accomplishments of their students. On Tuesday, North Hills High School announced it would have an in-person “socially distant” five-hour long ceremony.

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