Grad is a time for celebration… and hand wringing.
Who can’t help but feel good about the young, enthusiastic spirits who gathered at Transfer Beach last week, then in the Ladysmith Secondary School gymnasium for their convocation ceremony? Bright, energetic, brimming with aspirations, they are our best hopes for the future, and we can be pretty certain that in chasing their dreams, and succeeding, they will sustain and renew our vision of a dynamic, prosperous society.
A bird, flitting from shoulder to shoulder at the run up to the Class of 2016 photo shoot at Transfer Beach would have caught conversational snippets of farewells, of plans for post secondary education, or travel, or jobs, or a pause to reflect and gain some bearings. Just about every conversation would have focused in some way or other on the transition all those students were going through crossing the threshold into full adulthood.
And that’s where the hand-wringing comes in – not amongst the students so much as for parents, who for 18 or 19 years have been guiding their daughters and sons to just this moment, when the children are going to have to fly pretty-much on their own. Pride, seasoned with the perpetual concern parents feel for their offspring, is to be expected at graduation time. It’s tradition.
Most parents, though, if they compare the Class of 2016 to their own graduating class will likely find a group of students who are better equipped to face life’s challenges. We’ve learned a lot since the 90s about tolerance, adaptation, equity, and the need to treat each other with respect. Many of those lessons have been imparted by teachers, support staff and administrators of our schools – cumbersome and frustrating as the system can be for all of us, they deserve our praise and thanks.
So to the Class of 2016, all the best as you set off in pursuit of your dreams. You will be making the news of the future, and we at the Chronicle look forward to telling your stories.