7,000 Northside ISD seniors wait for graduation date


SAN ANTONIO – More than 7,000 Northside Independent School District high school seniors and their families are in a holding pattern right now as they wait to find out when the students will graduate next year.

Northside schools have been graduating at the Alamodome for the last 10 years. The location hasn't changed, but the district is waiting for a concrete graduation date.

Clark High School senior Fernanda Sepulveda said that makes her nervous.

"The fact that we don't have a graduation date is kind of detrimental to my family because a lot of my family is from Mexico," Sepulveda said. "So it's hard for them to set plane fare and dates and everything to get here."

Northside ISD spokesman Pascual Gonzalez said once they got the graduation dates for this school year, they communicated that to parents. But on Nov. 4, they heard from the Alamodome staff again.

"It seems like after we got confirmation from the Alamodome about the week that we would have graduation, which is June 6 through 10, we received another notice that said, indeed, those dates were not confirmed," Gonzalez said.

"It's always been kind of early summer, so that's what people usually plan for," said Chase Brown, a Clark High School senior. "So we tell our families to be ready for a few days after school and now we don't even know when to tell them."

"We've all planned around it," said Jennifer Pham, a Clark High School senior. "My mom has booked a trip overseas and it's really hard to get refunded because you don't get refunded the exact amount."

Gonzalez said their schools are so large that another venue is not an option. Plus, the Freeman Coliseum and AT&T Center are booked.

He said as soon as they get word from the Alamodome as to when those graduation dates will be, they will let everyone know.

"What we're looking for right now is a solid confirmed week that the Alamodome will allow us to come in and graduate all of our seniors," Gonzalez said.

Nick Langella, Alamodome general manager, released the following statement on Friday:

"There has been no cancelation of any graduation ceremonies, and the Alamodome has every intention of hosting next year's commencement ceremonies. Traditionally, the Alamodome does not contract the graduation schedule until six months prior to each ceremony. We are currently working with several events and will do everything within our power to accommodate school districts who annually hold graduations at the Alamodome."

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