A Special Message Regarding Options Addressing Graduation Complications Due to COVID 19 Concerns

Dear School Administrator:

As you know the situation in regarding COVID 19 (aka Coronavirus) and the steps various organizations are taking in response to the spread of the virus is dynamic and changing with each passing day.

Academic Cap & Gown is monitoring various school districts and responses to this health issue. While no graduations have been suspended or canceled so far, Academic is aware of the possibility that such a suspension or cancellation could become an option schools may choose as the issue evolves.

Academic is therefore engaging in a proactive plan to offer a variety of options for our client schools to consider in making decisions regarding graduations this season. This plan is based on conversations we're had with various school administrations and parents. Options include:

● Graduation With Minimized Contact

● Graduation Without an Audience

● Postponed Graduation

● Canceled Graduation

1) Proceeding with Graduation, While Minimizing Contact: Your graduation action plan likely involves minimizing contact to reduce risk, and the supply of graduation products to your families should fit with that larger plan. The lines and contact involved with measuring your students (if this has not already taken place) and selling products such as class rings, jackets, diploma plaques, and related graduation products may be something your school would prefer to minimize at this time. If you would like, Academic can provide website links for your students to enter their information and make purchases to be shipped directly to the school for distribution, or directly to the student's home address (provided our reduced shipping costs are included in the purchase price). If you normally purchased such products at a reduced price and resell them to families to fund your graduation, Academic can work with you to accommodate such a process. Please talk with your sales representative for further assistance.

2) Graduation Without Audience: Some schools may opt to have a graduation with just students and no audience members, while live streaming the graduation for family and friends to view online. If this is an option your school chooses to pursue, the procedure for purchasing and delivering graduation caps and gowns should proceed as normal. Your school may wish to take advantage of online sizing, and may also wish to allow for parents to opt out of the formal ceremony but receive their cap and gown at home to take pictures in private. Academic can accommodate opt-outs, including shipping caps and gowns directly to home addresses for a small fee.

3) Postponed Graduation Ceremony: In the event your school chooses to postpone the graduation until a later date, Academic recommends you proceed with the ordinary purchase of Caps and Gowns for your graduating student body based on your ordinary schedule and original budget allocations rather than delaying such a purchase until the postponement date. The procedure to measure your students, label their gowns, and distribute them to your school is a seasonal endeavor, and you will want to make sure your caps and gowns are reserved for your students during the season. You can store these items at your school, or in the alternative Academic can arrange to store your order at our warehouse in Chatsworth, California held in reserve for your future graduation date at no additional cost. Academic cannot guarantee availability of your caps and gowns, or your negotiated pricing, if you delay the purchase beyond the graduation season. However, we will work with our customers to try and accommodate your needs as best we can. Please contact your sales representative to discuss any such accommodations.

4) Cancellation of Formal Graduation Ceremony: Should you choose to cancel the formal ceremony, Academic recommends that you provide your students and their families with a set of mementos and commemorative items symbolizing the graduation of the student so that the family may privately enjoy this occasion and cherish this achievement as a “Home Graduation Package”. This is an important event, and the taking of family photos in graduation caps and gowns, the framing of diplomas, and the opportunity to purchase a class ring and similar remembrances will be meaningful to many of your families. Academic can either supply your caps and gowns to the school for pickup by parents and students, or can arrange for a private website where families may enter their measurement information (if such information has not already been collected by Academic employees) and/or order graduation items. Our products can also be shipped directly to student addresses, provided the actual cost of shipping is paid by the family. Academic is fortunate to have made special arrangements with UPS to offer lower shipping prices than those listed on the UPS public rate charts, and will pass along this reduced price to your students and their families. If this is an option your school plans to pursue, please contact your sales representative to work out further details.

Academic will continue to stay on top of this health issue. Since most graduations take place closer to Summer, it is our sincere hope that this health crises will recede by your graduation date and your ceremony will proceed on a semi-normal basis. If your school does need to make a change, we hope these options provide some helpful choices for your school to consider when deciding how to carry on with graduation. Academic is here to work with you to make sure your students and families are satisfied with your efforts to provide a graduation under difficult circumstances.

Should you have any questions, comments, or wish to discuss other ideas, please do not hesitate to contact your sales representative. You may also contact me by email at markcronan@academicapparel.com.


Mark Cronan, VP

Academic Cap and Gown


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