Finley High School Year 12 students dressed up in their finest suits and gowns as they said goodbye to the school at their official graduation ceremony on Thursday night.
It was a big week for the Year 12 students who had endured 13 sometimes difficult but generally informative years of schooling and were able to celebrate it over the course of last week.
After a couple of pranks earlier in the month, the students turned to the more formal side of their graduation, starting with a breakfast they hosted for all of their teachers and school staff on Tuesday morning.
This was followed by what principal Jeff Ward described as a ‘‘really nice and funny’’ muck up assembly.
At midday on Tuesday, the official formal assembly took place where students received their final certificate.
‘‘We have a fantastic group of students who are about to embark on the next stage of their life,’’ Mr Ward said.
‘‘Every student has been guided, shaped and developed by their 13 years of schooling, to not only prepare them for their final examinations, but also equip them with the necessary skills required to be successful in an ever changing world.’’
On Thursday night it was time for parents, friends and teachers to say goodbye at the Year 12 formal.
Year 12 adviser Madeline Jackson (nee Philpot), spoke about the tremendous amount of work that went into the evening and indeed, their whole graduation week.
‘‘I’ve had a lot of help with the event,” she said.
‘‘A lot of organisation went into the graduation, it was a big three or four days for the staff and the students.’’
The graduation night was a huge success for all who attended with Mrs Jackson experiencing waves of emotion and pride for her ‘‘kids’’.
‘‘It’s bittersweet, probably more bitter than sweet,’’ she said.
‘‘I love these kids and I’ll miss them a lot but I’m proud of them as well and I think they’ll go on to do good things, so that’s probably the sweet side.’’
Graduating student Ben Ashley-Cooper drew a breath from his excitement of graduation night to explain how much relief there was for all that has gone into the last decade for himself and his fellow students, adding ‘‘it’s not over yet’’.
‘‘It feels pretty good; a lot of hard work and effort has gone into 13 years of schooling so it’s good to be finished but a bit nerve racking as to what’s coming next,’’ he said.
‘‘There’s still a bit of work to do before the HSC exams, but we’ll get there.’’