Elaine Fournier, principal of Wilberforce Elementary School, said in her closing remarks at this year’s graduation ceremony, how honoured she feels watching most of the Grade 8 graduates grow since kindergarten.

“I think for me it’s the deepest sense of pride and it’s also a deep sense of being connected to the community,” said Fournier. “Parents entrust us with their children and we do our very best to honour that trust each and every day.”

The Grade 8’s of Wilberforce walked across the stage to get their awards and diplomas June 26, as the first steps of their journey leading them to Haliburton Highlands Secondary School in the fall.

Violette Kane, valedictorian, said in her speech how the memories from Wilberforce will stay with her throughout her life and how everything she’s learned will help her in the coming years.

“It’s scary, yes,” she said. “But everything we’ve learned in elementary school will prepare us for high school.” Fournier said how excited she will be to watch these same kids cross the graduation stage in four years at HHSS and hopefully again when they graduate post-secondary.

“School is certainly about academics and about helping them to achieve in literacy and numeracy but it’s so much more than that,” said Fournier. “It’s about creating good citizens who are going to be able to go out in the world and make it a better place.”

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