Some North Carolina high school seniors are going to have an unforgettable graduation this spring. State and Cabarrus County school officials, along with the Charlotte Motor Speedway, have announced plans to hold several graduation ceremonies for the Cabarrus County Class of 2020 at the speedway. The events will allow students to participate in an in-car graduation ceremony. Students will receive their diplomas at the start /finish line on the track. State Superintendent Mark Johnson made the announcement today.
“We are grateful to the Charlotte Motor Speedway for making their facility available to some of our graduating seniors to give them the opportunity to have an unforgettable graduation this year,” said Superintendent Johnson. “When we approached the speedway with this idea, they began work right away to make the speedway available and to plan an incredible graduation experience.”
With school buildings closed due to the COVID-19 pandemic, educators have had to find alternatives to traditional graduation ceremonies. Seniors from all 10 Cabarrus County high schools will have their graduation at Charlotte Motor Speedway on June 12 and 13.
“Cabarrus County Schools is excited that our Class of 2020 graduates will be able to celebrate their graduation at such a unique venue,” said Cabarrus County Schools Superintendent Dr. Chris Lowder.
“We are grateful to Charlotte Motor Speedway for their hospitality and look forward to working with them to make this a memorable experience for our graduates and their families."
“We also extend our thanks to State Superintendent Mark Johnson and the North Carolina Department of Public Instruction for their efforts in bringing everyone together to develop a plan to honor our graduates.”
“High school graduation is a rite of passage for teenagers and their families,” said Charlotte Motor Speedway Executive Vice President and General Manager Greg Walter. “These students have worked for years to get their diplomas, and they deserve to mark this milestone in a big way. We’re honored to engage our gigantic Speedway TV to help our neighbors create North Carolina’s first ever drive-in, drive-through graduation ceremony.”
Students will be able to watch commencement exercises drive-in style on the giant Speedway TV at Charlotte Motor Speedway. They then will proceed around the track to the start/finish line, where they will be presented their diplomas. Only vehicles with a graduating senior will be allowed in the infield and spectators will not be allowed in the grandstands per guidelines from the Cabarrus Health Alliance and the State of North Carolina to limit large gatherings.
“Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, high schools across North Carolina have had the challenge to give the Class of 2020 a suitable graduation experience while still complying with social distancing requirements,” said Superintendent Johnson.
Parents and students are advised to visit www.cabarrus.k12.nc.us/cabcograds20 for further graduation details.
Cabarrus County Schools
N.C. Department of Public Instruction
Charlotte Motor Speedway