The first graduates of St. Joseph High School throw their caps in the air after Saturday’s graduation ceremony. (Photo by SEAN MCINTOSH/Advocate staff)

WATCH: First graduating class at St. Joseph High School

A graduation ceremony was held at the Red Deer Catholic Regional school Saturday morning

St. Joseph High School’s first graduation class tossed their caps in the air to mark the end of Grade 12.

Red Deer’s newest high school had its graduation ceremony for 97 students in its gymnasium Saturday morning.

Graeme Daniel, St. Joseph principal, said these students will set the stage for future graduating classes.

“They’re a big part in creating traditions for us,” he said. “This graduating class brought little bits of themselves and left it here.”

One graduate who is not originally from Canada, suggested they ring a bell at the end of the graduation ceremony – a tradition in her home country. Daniel said this is one of the many things these students will leave at St. Joseph.

“They had a lot of faith coming to a new school. There’s always uncertainty in what you don’t know and these kids embraced uncertainty,” he said.

Daniel said he’s proud the students didn’t miss the same experiences students in other Red Deer schools have; there was a major dramatic performance, competitive sports teams and completed grad service projects, which is a tradition for Red Deer Catholic Region Schools.

“This day is their day and we want them to have fun,” he said. “I’m very proud of the students. They made sure high school was a good experience for themselves.”

Daniel said St. Joseph had a very good first year thanks to its veteran teachers.

“They’ve all been doing this for a long time – they came from Notre Dame and that’s an amazing school,” said Daniel. “Having them join us here really helped us set the tone. They know their curriculum, they know kids and they know how to teach very well.”

It was a special day for Daniel as both a principal and a father because he was able to hand his daughter her high school diploma.

“Not everyone gets that opportunity and I’m blessed with it,” he said. “It really puts things into perspective as a father and as a principal. Family is so important.”

This was the final Red Deer high school graduation ceremony of the year.

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Ninety-seven St. Joseph High School students celebrated graduation Saturday morning. (Photo by SEAN MCINTOSH/Advocate staff)

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