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TS Tapped to Help Pivot Charter School Turn Graduation Ceremonies into Virtual Parades

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It became clear in the summer of 2020 for Pivot Charter Schools, an accredited public charter school with four campuses in California, that in-person graduations were not going to be possible with the COVID-19 Public Health orders. Pivot turned to Tripepi Smith to help adapt graduation plans for two of its sites into successful, memorable graduation parades for the seniors and their loved ones.

The Tripepi Smith team helped plan and execute safe and fun graduation parades for Pivot Charter School North Bay and Pivot Charter School North Valley, and provided live-streaming support so all the seniors’ families and loved ones could watch them graduate from the safety of their own homes.

“One of Pivot’s core values is celebrating the achievements of our hard-working, graduating seniors each year. Our teachers knew that we had to do something to honor our seniors’ accomplishments,” said Pivot Executive Director Jayna Gaskell. “Pivot was so grateful to have Tripepi Smith’s expertise on our team when we decided to pursue an alternative graduation ceremony. We could not have held successful graduation parades without Tripepi Smith’s knowledge of technology, social media, streaming, graphic design and communications.”

On graduation day, Pivot seniors arrived at the ceremony in decorated cars and traditional caps and gowns. Their names were announced one at a time and the seniors exited their cars, picked up their diploma (while practicing social distancing guidelines) and posed for a photo. Loved ones from across the country tuned in and watched in real-time as their seniors received their diplomas, and they quickly flooded the Facebook comment section with congratulation messages.

Led by Co-Founder and CFO Nicole Smith and Director Jen Nentwig, video guru and live-streaming expert Business Analyst Skylar Hunter provided Pivot staff members with equipment recommendations and virtual training so they could successfully run a virtual ceremony. Junior Business Analyst Alexandra Applegate ensured the live streams were correctly broadcasting to Pivot’s websites and  distributed social media posts and press releases to guarantee families and the community could tune in.

Senior Graphic Designer Kjerstin Wingert created virtual graduation invitations to the live-streamed ceremonies. Students from all four Pivot sites, including Pivot Charter School Riverside and Pivot Charter School San Diego, received lawn signs and car decals designed by Tripepi Smith as part of “graduation packs,” hand-delivered to graduating seniors by Pivot staff.

“We know how important it is to the Pivot leadership to properly recognize the seniors who work so hard to graduate,” said Nicole. “In line with Pivot’s innovative approach to education, the Tripepi Smith team was proud to help Pivot host unique graduation parades to celebrate students’ accomplishments during this hard year.”

Tripepi Smith has supported Pivot Charter School since 2013 with a variety of communications services, including a recent rebranding of the organization to celebrate its 10-year anniversary.

Pivot Charter School serves the communities and surrounding areas of San Diego, Sonoma, Riverside and Butte Counties. Its hybrid approach to education combines in-person instruction with online tutoring and small group classes to meet the unique needs of each student. Pivot’s online offerings position them well to work through the challenges posed by the COVID-19 crisis.

In addition to Pivot, Tripepi Smith has also been enlisted by the cities of Huntington Beach, Bellflower and Fullerton to direct and live broadcast City Council meetings and community events.

About Pivot Charter Schools

ROADS Education Organization, a not-for-profit California corporation, currently operates four Pivot Charter Schools serving San Diego, Riverside, Butte and Sonoma counties. Its public charter school program combines resource center offerings with an online curriculum that allows students to receive individualized attention and participate in small group instruction classes and tutorials. At Pivot, students learn more and struggle less.

Pivot Charter School offers students in grades TK-12 an opportunity for a blended learning program, with online courses combined with teacher support and subject-specific tutoring at our resource center. Through Pivot’s advanced educational and enrichment program, students have the opportunity to participate in AP and college courses, interest-focused electives, as well as opportunities for social interaction through clubs, resource center events, and field trips. Visit,, or to learn more.

About Tripepi Smith

Tripepi Smith is a California-based marketing, technology and public affairs firm that serves for-profit, nonprofit and public agencies. Its unique mix of marketing and technology prowess provides a competitive advantage to agencies seeking to leverage the internet to achieve their communication goals. The firm provides full content creation services, including: ghost writing, collateral development, photography, video production, search engine marketing, search engine optimization, email marketing campaigns and website design and execution. Tripepi Smith clients include: City of American Canyon, City of Culver City, City of Cupertino, City of Daly City, City of Duarte, City of El Cerrito, City of Indian Wells, City of La Cañada Flintridge, City of Lakeport, City of Lake Forest, City of Napa, City of Paramount, City of Santa Cruz, City of Tracy, City of Vallejo, Cal Choice Energy Authority, California Joint Powers Insurance Authority, Inland Empire Utilities Agency, Rowland Water District, California Contract Cities Association, California City Management Foundation, Institute for Local Government, League of California Cities, Renne Public Law Group, Bob Hall & Associates and Climatec Energy Services.