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State issues new rules for school, college graduations

Graduation
Graduation(MGN)
Published: Apr. 12, 2021 at 4:07 PM EDT
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ALBANY, N.Y. (WWNY) - Governor Andrew Cuomo has announced new rules for graduation ceremonies organized by schools, colleges and universities. Effective May 1, indoor and outdoor graduation and commencement ceremonies will be allowed with limited attendee capacity, depending on the event size and the location (e.g., stadium, arena, arts and entertainment venue).

All event organizers and venues hosting ceremonies must follow the state’s health and safety protocols, including requiring face masks, social distancing, health screenings and collection of contact tracing information.

For events that exceed the social gathering limits of 100 people indoors or 200 people outdoors, event organizers and venues must notify the local health department and require attendees to show proof of a recent negative test result or proof of completed immunization prior to entry.

The state says the requirements are consistent with its guidance for other congregate commercial and social activities, including catered receptions, performing arts, and sports competitions.

Outdoor Events:

  • Large-scale ceremonies of over 500 people at outdoor venues will be limited to 20 percent of capacity, applicable to venues with a total capacity of 2,500 or more.
  • Medium-scale ceremonies of 201-500 people at outdoor venues will be limited to 33 percent of capacity.
  • Small-scale ceremonies of up to 200 people or 2 attendees per student at outdoor venues will be limited to 50 percent of capacity. Proof of recent negative test result or proof of completed immunization is optional.

Indoor Events:

  • Large-scale ceremonies of over 150 people at indoor venues will be limited to 10 percent of capacity, applicable to venues with a total capacity of 1,500 or more.
  • Medium-scale ceremonies of 101-150 people at indoor venues will be limited to 33 percent of capacity.
  • Small-scale ceremonies of up to 100 people or 2 attendees per student at indoor venues will be limited to 50 percent of capacity. Proof of recent negative test result or proof of completed immunization is optional.

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