The Lawrence school board will be asked Monday to break with tradition and reschedule 2004 high school graduation ceremonies to the Sunday one week ahead of Memorial Day weekend.
If not shifted to May 16, there would be a 10-day gap between the last day of classes for seniors at Lawrence High School and Free State High School and the students' commencement.
Scott Morgan, school board president, said there was concern fewer students would participate in graduation rehearsals and the formal graduation program if the ceremony was left on the Sunday immediately before Memorial Day.
"This made more sense," Morgan said. "More kids can take part in graduation."
In addition, principals of the two high schools said, teachers prefer not to work at graduation programs on the holiday weekend.
Since 1989, graduations for LHS and Free State seniors have been on Sunday of the Memorial Day weekend. From 1948 to 1988, LHS had graduations on Tuesday, Wednesday or Thursday nights.
David Shulenburger, provost at Kansas University, said the university could accommodate the district's proposal to change the date because commencement exercises at KU will be May 23.
If approved by the school board, the Free State and LHS programs would still be at Memorial Stadium if weather was good and at Allen Fieldhouse if conditions turned bad.