Bad hair, blurry photos, and more bad hair. We’ve dug out our old secondary school photos for a trip down memory lane (for some, it’s a lot further than others). From our fondest school moments to the advice we wish we could give our younger selves, here’s what we want today’s graduates to know.
I think my favourite school memory has to be spending my study break before my final year exams with my friends. We would meet at one person’s home, bring all of our revision notes with us, and spend the time gossiping and having fun. We knew that we would all be going to different sixth forms and then different universities, so we wanted to spend as much time together as possible. We did very little actual studying, which was probably reflected in our grades, but I wouldn’t change that time for the world.
Ginny Wong, Sub-editor
While leaving school and meeting new people is a chance to reinvent yourself and leave your childhood persona behind, don’t be too quick to hide your history. You’ll grow and develop new tastes and skills naturally as you get older and learn more about yourself. But I learned, and I hope you will, my high-school self will always be a part of who I am, so embrace it. When you get to my age, you’ll look back on that time and be grateful for what you learned and how it shaped your life.
Karly Cox, Deputy Editor
This photo of me and my best friend was taken in a purikura (Japanese photo booth) we found in an arcade when we were 16. I love it because it captures our rebellious years of skipping remedial classes and hanging out in gaming arcades instead. A good fraction of our pocket money went to playing games like Resident Evil and Bishi Bashi, and we would spend any leftover tokens we had on photo booths.
Even though we got detention numerous times for ditching those classes, this strengthened our friendship and we still reminisce about those good old days from time to time. But looking back, I wish I had been more appreciative of my tutors who stayed back after school to coach us, and spent more time revising because I struggled with my “O” levels studies.
Doris Wai, Multimedia Producer
This is my Grade Eight graduation picture, because yes, in Canada you graduate from Junior High in Grade Eight before going to high school. One lesson I learned in school is not to be afraid to ask for things you want. The worst thing that can happen is they say no, and you won’t have lost anything. That’s how I became the captain of the chess team. And also how I got my first girlfriend ...
Jamie Lam, Special Projects Editor
My favourite memory in high school is sitting with my friends in our senior centre, where we would chat about anything and everything, and laugh at our jokes so hard that our bellies would ache right through our last lesson! They were truly some of the best times of my life, and I miss seeing my friends every day and spending hours on end doing silly things and playing pranks on one another.
Rhea Mogul, Junior reporters’ manager
This is me dressed for my homecoming dance when I was 16 years old. In the US, we would have three dances at school each year, and they were very formal so you had to dress up. I was super excited because the boy I had a huge crush on asked me to the dance. I had very low self-esteem back then and I wish I could go back in time and tell my teenage self to not compare myself to my classmates or people on TV, and that I was awesome and smart, and that I deserved all the good things in life.
Dannielle Higginbotham, Web Editor
This photo was taken on our lovely school field on my last day of Sixth Form, so I would’ve just turned 18. I have really happy memories of that time in my life and the people I spent it with, but I also remember being in a hurry for the next phase of my life to begin. The problem is, that feeling of restlessness never really goes away, no matter how many new phases you enter, so I wish I could tell my younger self to just enjoy each moment for what it is. The future will arrive in its own good time.
Charlotte Ames-Ettridge, Sub-editor