The Sxoxomic School at Alkali Lake operates on a slightly different calendar than most area schools. A
s many Esketemc First Nation band members are employed in the forest industry it was decided a number of years ago to adopt a schedule more friendly to family holidays and time together (time off in April for breakup).
As a result, the calendar year for the children who attend the little community school at Alkali Lake doesn’t end until July 13.
On the evening of July 12, the school provided the community a barbecue dinner prior to the Youth Recognition and Awards presentations later that evening. The major awards, presented by Sxoxomic School principal Peter Bowman, were presented as follows: Jarrod Johnny (co-winner/most improved), Casey Thomas (cultural), Elektra Johnson (co-winner/most improved plus sportsmanship), Waylon Harry (athletic), Kaely Johnny (attendance), Danielle Robbins (artistic) and Myla Johnson (academic).
The T-shirts that all of the students are wearing in the photo are part of an annual tradition recognizing the youth recognition evening and each person in attendance on the evening receives one.
This 2012 T-shirt features a white remembrance ribbon logo inscribed with the initials N.P. to honour the memory of the late Nicholas Paul, a former Sxoxomic student, fellow classmate and friend, who passed away recently after losing a valiant battle against cancer. Nicholas’ mother Zena, father James and other family members were there to hand out the T-shirts. Nic’s grandmother Barbara Chelsea was also honoured during the evening, accepting a beautiful Pendleton blanket from the school band as she has retired after 20-plus years of teaching kindergarten.