Almost like being there

Published 3:32 pm Thursday, June 10, 2010

Those who cant make it to Friday nights graduation ceremonies at Polk County High School can still have virtually the best seat in the house.

Polk County Schools will stream both the graduation ceremony and tonights Polk County High School and Polk County Virtual Early College Senior Award ceremony live on the Internet through a link on Both Internet broadcasts will begin at 7 p.m.

It is the first time either event will be presented on the web.

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Were hoping this will benefit a lot of families who have folks who cant come to town for graduation or the awards ceremony, said Polk County Schools Communications Coordinator Stacey Stafford.

The awards ceremony will be held at the Polk County High auditorium, but the graduation ceremony is scheduled to be held at the football stadium, barring poor weather.

Were going to give it a try, said Dave Scherping, director of technology for Polk County Schools. The awards ceremony will be a test run. Hopefully, well work out the kinks and be ready to go Friday night.

The video streams will be presented by the high schools video technology class, which has recorded graduation ceremonies and sold them on DVD as fundraisers for the past several years. Audiences will not be able to record the live stream on their computers, but DVDs will once again be available for purchase through the video technology class.

Scherping said the broadcast comes at no cost to the school system. It is being presented through a link to, a site akin to that allows users to stream live events through the sites servers.

While this is the first event to be broadcast by the school system, it could be the first of many events to make its way to interested audiences via the Internet.

Were always trying to be forward thinking in terms of what we can do with technology, said Stafford.

Scherping said there are no pause or rewind buttons on the live streams.

Its live, so if youre 10 minutes late, youve missed the first 10 minutes, Scherping said. Theres no way to go back or anything.

During the broadcast, viewers will be polled about the quality of the video. Contact Scherping with questions about the broadcasts at (828) 894-3051 or by email at