Catasauqua Press

Friday, July 10, 2020

Respectfully Yours: graduation

Thursday, May 10, 2018 by JACQUELYN YOUST Special to The Press in Focus

Dear Jacquelyn,

Our son is graduating from high school in May. Between the announcements, ceremony, and party, I am overwhelmed. When do you send graduation announcements and when should party invitations be sent?

Dear Reader, High school graduation is an important milestone in a teenager’s life. Here are some tips to help you navigate high school graduation etiquette.

The graduation invitation is a request to attend the graduation ceremony. The graduation invitation includes details on the card: verification that the recipient is invited to attend, such as “Please join us,” the address and time, as well as an RSVP. Invitations to the graduation ceremony can be sent up to four weeks in advance.

Many high schools have begun to limit the number of attendees at graduation ceremonies because of space limitations. You can simply explain, “We’d love to have you, but we’re limited by the number of tickets.” Most people will understand if there is limited seating.

Graduation announcements give word that your child is receiving his or her high school diploma. Your friends and family get to share in your family’s exciting news. Send graduation announcements to anyone your family would send a holiday card to. These do not include details about the ceremony or reception because it’s not an invitation to attend. Graduation announcements are mailed two weeks following the graduation.

If the graduation announcement doubles as an invitation to the graduation ceremony, it should be sent at least three weeks before the graduation ceremony.

Graduation party invitations should be sent to friends and family three to four weeks before the date. Invitations for out-of-town relatives and friends should be sent out at least five weeks in advance. Send invitations for the graduation party in the mail as opposed to electronically.

If your new graduate receives gifts, be sure to keep track of the gifts received and send handwritten thank-you notes within two weeks.

The most important etiquette of all for graduates and their families: Enjoy this milestone and celebrate. Cheers to the graduate!

Respectfully Yours, Jacquelyn

Have a question? Email: Jacquelyn Youst is owner of the Pennsylvania Academy of Protocol, specializing in etiquette training. She is on the board of directors of the National Civility Foundation. All Rights Reserved © 2018 Jacquelyn Youst