EDITORIAL: Congratulations, ADSS Class of 2013

Farewell to principal Mike Ruttan and congratulations to the first graduating class of the new Alberni Valley high school.

For the past six years, Alberni District Secondary School principal Mike Ruttan has concentrated on building student assets at the high school.

With the construction of a new school at the pinnacle of Ruttan’s career, and a graduating class clearly invested in its new facility and its future, we say, “job well done, Mr. Ruttan.”

When Ruttan arrived at ADSS six years go, he told his staff they were going to change the culture of the school. As he faces retirement following the Class of 2013’s convocation ceremony on Friday, Ruttan can rest easy that he and his staff have achieved that goal.

The school’s graduation rate for Grade 12s hovers around 96 per cent, and this year the high school will see a record number of aboriginal students graduate. Six years ago, ADSS’s school completion rate for aboriginal students was second last in the province, Ruttan noted.

It is not only the high school that sees value in its graduating youth: this community clearly values education, as evidenced by the amount of scholarships and bursaries available to graduates.

This community support is a trend Ruttan said must continue.

“It costs the government $14 million to run this school. What is society getting for its $14 million? We better make sure as a society we’re graduating educated youth.

“This community’s asset is its people,” Ruttan said at a recent luncheon held to promote the school’s successes.

‘To us, it’s a success if once students graduate they have a full range of opportunities available to them.”

— Alberni Valley News