Grad 2011 breaks record

From the very beginning all we wanted for Grad was a safe, dry, incident free night after the prom

Editor, The Times:

From the very beginning all we wanted for Grad was a safe, dry, incident free night after the prom. Don’t get us wrong, we weren’t delusional in thinking some kids wouldn’t party or even stay at prom but … we were going to try and try we did.  The question now is, did we succeed?

For those of you who don’t know what took place this year, here’s what happened. A group of parents made requests from our local businesses and from Kamloops. They told them they wanted prom to be safe this year, with no big bush parties. Our goal was to keep kids at the school as long as possible. We purchased gifts, received donations and used them as incentives. There were some pretty awesome prizes. Approximate value was $4,000 with 61 draws made.

At 11 p.m. on prom night, June 4, the kids dropped their names in a bowl and away we went … staying at the high school. The last draw at 1 a.m. was a $250 gift certificate from the Ramada, a mini fridge purchased with funds and a laptop. The laptop had been donated by Tim Pennell from the TNRD (thank-you). Congratulations to Kelsey Lee, who won the laptop.

Afterwards the kids laughed, cried, hugged, danced, stayed dressed up, and ate loads of food. The lights went on at 1:30 a.m. and it was all over. We were left with more than half of the graduating class of 2011.  No sirens, no big fire in the woods, no creepy old guys hanging out with our young girls, no DJ supplying more than just music, no hospital visits … did we succeed?

Thank-yous to everyone couldn’t fit in this letter. Parents, teachers, the school and most of all a great group of kids, you all deserve a big round of applause.

Moments we will remember include the party kids who were still there at midnight … very proud of you guys. The group shot at the end … awesome. The parents who worked together to make this happen, even though we didn’t always get along, it was fun.

Lenette, super happy you were part of the graduating class of 2011 after the year you have had. It was a big reason to make the night a safe and party free one. Sandy, thanks for making us all take a deep breath and realizing what we have. Thanks to the RCMP for your part in this (and the donation is greatly appreciated). To the community I ask you to keep supporting the parents of future grads and to keep our kids safe. They deserve that much. We’ve lost enough.

Saying this for all the parents who put this together, we wish we could freeze the moment, saying we would never do it again but we probably would. It was worth all the time that was invested in it, and it’s bittersweet now that it’s all over. THANK-YOU!

Grad 2011 parents

Clearwater Secondary School