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Congratulations to the Class of 2018
May 10, 2018

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Approximately 5,000 students across Lee County will mark the culmination of their high school careers starting this weekend with the majority held May 19-20.

Graduation ceremonies are a milestone occasion and, as we do every year, we add our congratulations to the abundance of felicitations that rightfully should come their way.

As no doubt they will hear from a plethora of commencement speakers, graduation marks not only a culmination of effort, but a fresh beginning, a blank page upon which they can write their own futures.

Graduation also marks an official end to childhood and a jumpstart into adulthood, ready or not.

It is here that we typically offer some sage advice: Don't expect points for effort anymore, accept that nobody owes you anything, and be prepared to deal with the hard, cold fact that life isn't fair.

But we suspect that the Class of 2018 is well aware of life's harsh realities and knows full well that the world can, in just a moment, become a very bad place.

So instead of our annual get-ready-to-grow-up mantra, we will recognize that there are many in this year's graduating class, both here in Lee County and across the state of Florida, who are, indeed, already adults, young adults who want to change the world.

God bless them.

May they ever be as excited to carry the baton as they are anxious to receive it.

The first Lee Schools graduation will be at 1 p.m. at the Buckingham Exceptional Center on Saturday, May 12. The Buckingham Exceptional Center Auditorium is at 3291 Buckingham Road, Fort Myers.

Graduations for all 13 of Lee County School's high schools, the Lee Virtual School and Adult Education then begin next Saturday and continue through Sunday.

High school graduations will be held at Suncoast Arena at FSW, Alico Arena at FGCU and Germain Arena next weekend.

Graduation times and places are:

Saturday, May 19:

Suncoast Arena at FSW - 8099 College Pkwy, Fort Myers:

* Cape Coral High School - 10 a.m.

* Island Coast High School - 2:30 p.m.

* Mariner High School - 7 p.m.

Alico Arena - 10501 FGCU Blvd., Fort Myers

* Dunbar High School - 10 a.m.

* Estero High School - 2:30 p.m.

* Cypress Lake High School - 7 p.m.

Germain Arena - 11000 Everblades Pkwy, Estero

* Lehigh Senior High School - 10 a.m.

* South Fort Myers High School - 2:30 p.m.

* Riverdale High School - 7 p.m.

Sunday, May 20

Suncoast Arena at FSW, - 8099 College Pkwy, Fort Myers:

* Adult Education - 2:30 p.m.

* Lee Virtual School - 7 p.m.

Alico Arena - 10501 FGCU Blvd., Fort Myers

* Ida S. Baker High School - 2:30 p.m.

* North Fort Myers High School - 7 p.m.

Germain Arena - 11000 Everblades Pkwy, Estero

* Fort Myers High School - 2:30 p.m.

* East Lee County High School - 7 p.m.

The school district will also, for the fifth year, stream its graduation ceremonies online. The links are available through the district website at leeschools.net/graduation , district officials said.

Again, our very best wishes to the Class of 2018. Chase your dreams and wrest them to your will. The future is truly yours.

-Breeze editorial

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