Family Wants High School To Reschedule Graduation

Is this an outrageous request from an over-entitled soccer mom or a reasonable accommodation?  Janet Tener has asked that Clear Creek Amana High School, from which her son Zach is set to graduate with honors, to change the time of the graduation ceremony because their family has another event scheduled at the same time.  Now, before you rush to judge Mrs. Tener, be aware that it may not be so out-of-line as you might think.

It turns out that Zach has a twin brother who is going to graduate from nearby Solon High School at the exact same time, on the exact same date.  The family is asking to push the time of the graduation back a few hours so that the entire family can attend both ceremonies.  They are even willing to pay the costs of printing new announcements and posters and Zach has collected signatures from nearly a hundred of his classmates in support of such a change.  Still, the school board won’t budge.

If they can’t reach an agreement, Zach, one of four valedictorians in his class, has already decided that he will skip his own graduation in favor of his brother’s.  “Personally, I love my school,” he said. Still, he added, “no matter how much I love my school, I love my brother more.”

While I understand the family’s plight, I have to say that this seems like one of those situations that families with more than one kid have to face on a regular basis.  Some families have to split up between high school and middle school graduations while others have to divvy up winter concerts.  My wife and I have joked that now that our youngest is reaching preschool age, we need to marry a third person to take him to toddler gymnastics while I take the oldest to piano lessons and my wife takes the middle child to dance class.

In a few short years, we will be faced with similar issues with kids in elementary, middle, and high schools at the same time.  Add to that our need to work and there will, undoubtedly be many missed events.  But that, of course, is why camcorders were invented.  I would recommend that the Tener family get themselves a couple of good ones and sit down after the fact for a group viewing of both events.

Mind you, it might not be a bad idea for nearby schools to coordinate big events like graduations in the future so that conflicts like this can be avoided, but for those parents who get caught in such a conflict, well, that’s life.  What do you think?

Tags: , , , , ,

Leave a Reply