J. Douglas Hodgson Elementary School in Haliburton held its Grade 8 graduation in the gymnasium June 27. This year was a special year because it’s the 50th birthday of JDH.

Principal David Waito, vice principal Gord Wood, and Haliburton area school board trustee, Gary Brohman, had some words of wisdom for the graduates.

Brohman said, “life’s not easy, high school is a major jump. Celebrate all the great things that happen. When things get tough, don’t shut the door.”

Before announcing the award recipients, Waito had some kind words for the graduates. “We are so proud of all of you. The best places in life are not always easy to get to.”

To officially kick off the ceremony, graduate Leanne Sidsworth sang the national anthem. Valedictorian Fynn Gooley added, “we’ve all learned to bounce back through adversity these last few years.” Fynn also shared something from his mother, spoken by Brohman years ago. “There are three rules for high school. Go to class, go to class, go to class.”

Academic excellence awards:

Academic Excellence: Josie Morrison, Fynn Gooley

• Outstanding Distinction: Deagan Davison, Maxime Little

• Citizenship: Jordyn Hurd, Lincoln Holden

• Female Athlete of the Year: Veronica Heasman, Addyson Parish

• Male Athlete of the Year: Fynn Gooley

• Canadian Parents for French: Jordyn Titus, Madelyne Lafleur

• Rising Star: Harper Gooley, Gavin Vivian, Kyle Akey

Subject Award winners, presented June 23 at the JDH assembly:

Visual Arts: Sophia Burke, Alivia Brown

• Media Arts: Josie Morrison, Harper Gooley

• Drama: Zebedee Jones

• English Josie Morrison, Alivia Brown

• French: Macie Bjelis

• Geography: Shepherd George, Fynn Gooley

• History: Maxime Little, Chloe Morissette

• Math: Deagan Davison, Fynn Gooley

• Music: Leanne Sidsworth, Daniel Wheeler

• Physical and Health Education: Atticus Jorritsma, Hudson Horsley

Science: Maxime Little, Maddy Hubbard

• Dance: Jordyn Hurd, Alexis Dacey

• Core French: Haydyn Aggett, Brady Hamilton

The Honors Recipients:

Alexis Dacey

• Fynn Gooley

• Haydyn Aggett

• Jordyn Hurd

• Josie Morrison

• Madeline Hubbard

• Zebedee Jones

• Eric Mueller

• Hudson Horsley

• Shepherd George

• Chloe Morissette

• Macie Bjelis

• Leanne Sidsworth

• Brady Hamilton

• Maxime Little

• Claudia Nienajadlo

• Alivia Brown

• Zachary Lowe

• Deagan Davison

• Isabella Valentini

• Harper Gooley

• Atticus Jorritsma

• Addyson Parish

• Veronica Heasman

• Isaac Borgdorff