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Class of 2021 - GRADUATION

Wed, 01/13/2021 - 11:21am

View the 2021 Atholton High School Commencement Ceremony LIVE at 7pm on Tuesday, June 1



Frequently Asked Questions about Graduation and More

It is imperative that you are prompt for ALL rehearsals and that you cooperate fully in all that is asked of you so that these culminating events will be special for you and your family.

Do I have to participate in Graduation? 

Participation in graduation is optional. If you choose not to participate in the Graduation Ceremony, please sent a written request from your parent or guardian by May 7. Please make sure the request is sent to Mrs. Bopst. If you choose to not participate in graduation, you may upload a senior photo or cap and gown photo here to be used as virtual recognition. If one is not received by May 17, the Atholton logo will be used in its place. Students who do not attend in person graduation can pick up their diplomas in the front office the week of June 7 during school hours. 

Do I have to go to the rehearsals?

You are strongly encouraged to attend all rehearsals if you wish to participate in the graduation ceremony. You should be on time and stay for the full rehearsal. You are encouraged to attend to help you practice for graduation at Merriweather. Merriweather can be an overwhelming venue and practicing will help you feel more comfortable.

When is the Awards Ceremony and do I have to attend?

Senior awards will be held from 1:00 – 3:00 at the Atholton Stadium. Due to social distancing protocols, this is by invitation only and each attending senior will receive two (2) tickets. For those who would like to watch at home it will be livestreamed via the Atholton Raider Nation Facebook Page:

What should I wear to the Awards Ceremony and Graduation?

Students and families are asked to wear AHS spirit wear in accordance with the HCPSS dress code to the Awards Ceremony. Business casual attire under the students cap and gown is appropriate. Shows should be low-heeled or flat to lower the risk of tripping on your gown or the stairs. Tennis shoes, flip flops, sneakers, boots, sandals, or other casual footwear are not encouraged at any of the ceremonies. Wear your cap straight on your head with the deep part in the back and the tassel of the RIGHT temple. Masks are required for both graduates and spectators. Masks for the graduates will be provide by the school and will be distributed the day of caps and gowns. This is a big accomplishment so don’t forget to smile! 

When will I get my cap and gown? And what do I do with it?

Seniors will receive their cap and gown on Wednesday, May 26th 2021 at graduation rehearsal. Gowns should be hung immediately on a hanger to reduce wrinkles. The wrinkles will not come out if the gown stays in the bag. To steam out stubborn wrinkles, hang it up while a hot shower runs. Do not iron or tumble dry your gown. Please write your names on the cap (space provided inside the cap) and gowns (on the tag) immediately upon removing it from the package. Caps will not fit easily with all hair styles. Please adjust hair styles accordingly.

What if I have NOT ordered a cap and gown?

Cap and Gowns as well as other graduation memorabilia can be ordered directly through Balfour. You can view their brochure or order directly online.

If you wish to purchase ONLY a cap/gown follow these instructions:

  • Select this link
  • Select Atholton High School
  • Enter your email as a guest
  • Create a password
  • Then you can purchase a cap/gown for $57.24.  (The deadline for ordering was Saturday, May 1 so there may be a higher price at this time.)

When do I get my stole/cord to wear with my cap and gown?

Contact your club advisor  or teacher to determine if you qualify for a stole/cord and when/how to get it.

How late can I turn in my make-up work?

All make-up work must be completed by the end of the school day on, Friday, May 21.  Seniors last day of classes will be Friday, May 28.

Do I have to take finals to graduate? 

There are no finals for the 2020-2021 school year for any HCPSS student.

What should I do about debts? 

You will need to return all books and property of HCPSS and Atholton High School. This includes but is not limited to: Chromebooks, textbooks, media books, uniforms, instruments, and any other HCPSS items that may need to be returned. These must be cleared no later than May 14. Contact Ms. Fowler in the front office if you have any questions about student debts. Don’t wait until the last minute to clear your debt.  Seniors provided Chromebooks will return them to the school on May 26

Do I have to participate in Graduation? 

Participation in graduation is optional. If you choose not to participate in the Graduation Ceremony, please sent a written request from your parent or guardian by May 7. Please make sure the request is sent to Mrs. Bopst.

How many tickets do I get? 

Following new State orders announced last week, HCPSS is able to offer additional tickets for the upcoming graduation ceremonies and allow all guests to sit in the pavilion at Merriweather Post Pavilion. After working with Merriweather staff and the County to determine the number of tickets that may be distributed, each graduate will receive six tickets for guests who may sit wherever they prefer, in the pavilion or on the lawn. Staff, students, family members and guests who wish to wear masks are welcome to do so. Howard County Police and staff from Merriweather encourage families to carpool and limit the number of cars to two per family to minimize the impact on traffic and parking.

Can parents take pictures at Graduation?  

Yes! Guests are welcome to take pictures from their seats ONLY and must remain six-feet from other patrons at all times. We also ask they do not go into the aisles or the front of the stage. There will be a professional photographer who will take pictures as you receive your diploma. The proofs will be sent to you via U.S. Mail. There is no obligation to buy. There will also be a video available for purchase.

Where do we get our diploma? 

You will be handed the diploma cover only while on stage. You will be handed your diploma after you exit the stage and have returned to your seat.

Is there special parking for the disabled and elderly?

Yes, Merriweather has handicapped parking by the pavilion. There will be parking attendants throughout Merriweather to direct you. In order to park in the handicapped area, the vehicle must contain the state issued placard or license plate. If you do not have the parking tag or plates, there will be a drop off point for those who are unable to walk from the designated parking lot. Handicapped seating is available for guests who are in wheelchairs.

Can I request a Sign Language Interpreter?

If you or a family member is in need of a sign language interpreter, please contact Mrs. Bopst by May 7. Reserved seating is available for guests who request a sign language interpreter.


Senior Awards Ceremony              May 11 from 1:00 – 3:00               Atholton Stadium

                                                                                                             Invitation Only

                                                                                                             2 Guests Per Senior

                                                                                                             Livestreamed via facebook


Senior Celebration                          May 11 from 5:00 – 8:00                   Atholton Stadium

                                                                                                                 Open to All Seniors


Graduation Rehearsal                     May 19 from 8:00 – 11:30              Atholton Stadium



Graduation Rehearsal                     May 26 from 8:00 – 11:30              Atholton Stadium

                                                                                                                 Gown Distribution

                                                                                                                 Ticket Distribution


Graduation                                        June 1 at 7:00                                  Merriweather Post Pavilion

                                                                                                                    Graduates should arrive no later than 6:15




Information regarding senior activities will be updated as it becomes available, so please check out Class of 2021 News on the Atholton website [].