EDITORIAL: Here’s to a responsible transition

While high-school grads have earned the right to celebrate, they need to be safe and responsible.

This may not come as any great surprise to parents of teenagers, but as wonderful as many of them are – and there are plenty of examples here on the Peninsula – they don’t always follow the rules.

And when it comes to adhering to the legal drinking age, many aren’t patiently waiting for their 19th birthday before having their first sip of alcohol.

Graduation season – which we are now right in the middle of – is a time that should be joyous and celebratory.

But every year, there are a few tragic reports from across the country of Grade 12 students getting injured – or worse – because grad-night partying got out of hand in one way or another.

These are preventable tragedies that nobody in our community wants to see happen.

Graduation marks a time of big change for students. The last 13 years of K-12 education are now behind them, and the transition into the next phase of life – adulthood – is set to begin.

Teachers, school counsellors and parents have repeatedly told students that the choices made now (Should I work or go to school after I graduate? What do I want to get a degree in?) will have an impact on the rest of their respective lives.

The same logic applies to grad night.

Students, if you choose to celebrate this rite of passage with alcohol, be responsible.

That includes ensuring you are celebrating in a safe manner, in a safe location with people you know and trust.

Most importantly, it means ensuring you have a safe ride home – whether it’s a designated driver or waking up your parents at 3 a.m. asking to get picked up.

An important part of adulthood is learning to make good decisions. So start now.

Be smart and be responsible before you head out for your after-grad festivities. Have a plan.

It will no doubt serve you well, and will ensure you and your friends get home safe from a night of well-earned fun.

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