As students prepare to walk down the aisle in their caps and gowns, there's a certain energy that surrounds the week leading up to graduation day, according to Jute Wilson.
"It's a culmination," said Wilson, Dawson County High School principal. "After 13 years of school, just to see the look on the kids' faces ... it's amazing.
"Graduation is the biggest thing we do, and it's the celebration of a job well done."
While the numbers are not yet final, Wilson projects about 235 graduates in the class of 2011, the school's largest to date.
The class is talented, Wilson said.
"Not just in academics, but in art, music and athletics," he said. "It's apparent to me that our seniors are also a very tight-knit group, and they treat each other like a big family."
High school counselor Marjorie Poss agreed.
"They're a friendly and congenial class," Poss said. "They care about each other, and they have huge hearts for community service.
"They're great kids. We hate to see them go, but we wish them the best of luck."
Graduation week means schedules will change a bit.
Today, seniors will view a slideshow with photographs from throughout the year, including scenes of extracurricular events and activities.
Mandatory graduation practice will follow.
Baccalaureate is scheduled for 7 p.m. May 26 at First Baptist Church. Seniors should arrive by 6:30 p.m.
Graduation begins at 8:30 a.m. May 28 in the Dawson County High School Tiger Stadium. Seniors should arrive by 7:30 a.m. to line up.
For an in-depth look at the class of 2011, see the special graduation section inside today's print edition of the Dawson Community News.