Home Educational Trends Five Ways to Live Stream Your District’s High School Graduation

Five Ways to Live Stream Your District’s High School Graduation

by Miguel Guhlin
graduates tossing hats in air

Wondering what to do about video streaming high school graduation live? Yes, it is that time of year when superintendents are frantic. At that point, they turn to to their technology staff to ask a simple question.

“Help! We need to stream graduation this year! Can you get it done?”

At this time of year, there is little budget to get the job done. You must make do with left-over funding.  The pressure is on! 

Getting Started

Some school districts rely on an iPad with a Makayama Movie Mount kit. For others, a Macbook Pro laptop angled at the appropriate angle, hooked up to Google Hangouts. For some, using camera-equipped drones to capture graduations, is acceptable.  Most solutions offer free live streaming. Free services are ad-supported. You can pay to remove ads and obtain more views. 

Reminder: Have you asked for permission to video/audio-record or photograph students?
One question is, “Have you obtained student or parent permission to stream video and post it online?”. A media release in the student handbook may save you a lawsuit. Some districts have policies that are opt-out for photos and video.

Approaches to Streaming

Approach #1 – uStream.tv Gold Plan ($499 for 1 month)

“We used it last year for both graduations. We are doing the same this year,” shared one Texas school district technology director. “Thirty people watched live.  All students sign a video release. The release includes  online streaming.” Looking for a quick, easy solution?
One district signed up with uStream for graduation streaming. After the event, it dropped the account. UStream has several notable features. Features include 2,000 viewer hours. Unlimited viewer storage ensures viewers will not be locked out. Restricted embedding and live analytics round up the list of features. One school district says:

“UStream is our choice for streaming any video content out of the district. Works great. Can be embedded into a school blog or website. Can turn off the chat by embedding. It has other benefits. Anything we do adds to the network utilization. We streamed 15 separate UStream sessions last year all day long. There were no issues for the several hundred folks. Success.”

uStream is a great solution and you can’t go wrong with this one.

Approach #2 – LiveStream Premium Plan ($399 + $495 for Broadcaster)

Like uStream, LiveStream offers similar options for your high school graduation. The entry price point is more expensive given the need for a broadcaster. No limit exists for viewing hours. UStream has a limit of 2,000 viewing hours. Connect LiveStream to Facebook. This ensures video appears on your District’s Facebook site. Read more about its use in education venues.

Approach #3 – VLC Media Player (Free)

The VLC Media Player provides for a no-cost alternative to more expensive solutions. VLC can be a technical challenge. You might want to have a backup plan in place. Try it out first. One of the main benefits of VLC Media Player is that you have control over publishing your stream.

Approach #4 – TheCube

TheCube works on all mobile devices. It streams to popular outlets like the Web, Amazon, Roku, and more. A helpful starter kit for school personnel is available. Want to start broadcasting via your mobile device? Give TheCube a spin.

Approach #5 – Facebook Live

Facebook now allows for video streaming. To accomplish this, you’ll want to have a video camera and microphone ready to go, and a robust Internet connection (wired, not Wi-Fi).

Approach #6 – Sonic Foundry

Sonic Foundry offers two options. You can webcast yourself using the mobile Mediasite Recorders. For a more hands-off approach, let Sonic Foundry’s Mediasite Events team handle it. You can use recorded video to build a library of content that end users can access.


Capture the excitement of a high school graduation (or any school district event). Make it available as it happens. Post video to your District’s video venue.  Parents will soon have camera-equipped drones  filming their graduating senior. You may as well. Whatever you decide on, create an engaging experience for the remote viewer.

Need More Info?

Looking for more information? Texas school districts use these solutions. Why not give them a try?  Consider reading this buyer’s guide of additional video streaming solutions that can be adapted for use in school districts for streaming graduation.
This blog was updated with additional resources on Friday, February 23, 2018.

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