After the busiest year Parkside Secondary School has seen in history, around 40 graduates are ready to take on life’s next phase.
And after graduating from a school that has a teaching style that is different than the traditional high school approach, many grads are grateful for their teachers and counsellors, and the alternative learning environment they experienced at Parkside.
“I’m hoping to get into college,” said graduate Audriana Azak. She wants to study early childhood development.
She said she was going to miss one of her teachers, Mike Havanas, the most. “He taught English, communications,” she said. “He was just awesome to have.”
Valedictorian Raylena Lacroix sang Parkside’s praises as well.
“I learned more in Parkside than Cal, Skeena, and the other schools I attended before,” said Lacroix, outside of the REM Lee Theatre June 14 as her class was lining up outside the lobby before the big ceremony.
“I’m going to miss my friends,” she said. “A lot of them are leaving to study elsewhere, so I won’t get to see them again.”
Lacroix feels ready for the next step in life.
“I’m hoping to go to the college here,” she said. “Take a food course, and one day own my own restaurant.”
She’s also considering becoming an electrician — she has been working with her uncle on her house, and he’s been showing her the ropes.
“So, I have two different paths in mind. One of them will work out,” she said.
But first, she has to get through her valedictorian address — a task that is more than a little unnerving, she said.
“I’m going to talk about stuff students have had to overcome, pressures, difficulties with friends, boyfriends and family. How we all go through these things and what we can learn from them,” she said, before running off to join her class.