PASCAGOULA, MS (WLOX) - For decades, Pascagoula High School seniors have walked across Dutch Binion Field on graduation night. But this past May, the graduation was moved to the Coast Coliseum in Biloxi due to the football field getting new turf. And next year's graduating class just learned their graduation has already been scheduled for the Coliseum.
"We were all talking about it, talking about the pros and the cons and we just all came to the decision that the field is where we should be graduating," said Meha Patel.
Patel and her classmates presented the Pascagoula- Gautier School Board with their petition and listed a variety of concerns about having their graduation at the Coliseum.
"We're giving money away to another city when we could be using it in Pascagoula," said Patel.
Patel said their paper and online petitions already have more than 700 signatures.
"Well, our goal was to get 500. So exceeding 500, it made us feel accomplished," said Patel.
The concerned students initially took their petition to city leaders, getting their first signature from Mayor Dane Maxwell.
Superintendent Wayne Rodolfich addressed the students during the meeting, saying the board took into consideration several factors such as heat and rain before they made a decision to have graduation at the Coliseum. He applauded the students for coming to the council and suggested the students vote at registration on where they would like to have their graduation.
Pascagoula High School Principal Anthony Herbert agrees with that suggestion.
"I think it's a great idea to give them an opportunity as a senior class Pascagoula and Gautier to express themselves, and it looks like we're going to be doing that after school starts," said Herbert.