For the first time in its history, Lutsel K'e Dene School will be handing out high school diplomas.

The school expanded to include Grade 11 and 12 in 2011. Two students — Tristen Lockhart and Lucas Enzoe — will graduate from Grade 12 this year.

"I feel famous," Lockhart says. "You've got people who are saying: 'You're graduating Grade 12, congratulations!' And everything."

Enzoe transferred back to his home community from Fort Smith in order to get his diploma, but says it was difficult because he was on his own for much of his learning. 

"They need to have well-trained teachers for the community," says Enzoe, "because if you want more graduates, you're going to have to update the system to a standard level."

Graduating their first two students is a start, though, says Lockhart, who hopes his experience as a senior will help make it easier for future classes. Lockhart wants to stay in Lutselk'e, he says, and hopes to help other students graduate.

"They have a lot of kids here that don't see the whole aspect of graduating, don't see why it's important," he says. "And I want to stay here and help out with the school still.

According to its website, Lutsel K'e Dene School has approximately 65 students and 10 staff.