The Granite State High School 2017 Graduating Class Awarded Diplomas
(Concord, N.H.) The hard work paid off for twenty-two students at Granite State High School within the New Hampshire Department of Corrections Special School District. Corrections Commissioner Helen E. Hanks presented diplomas the graduates during a commencement exercise in the Visiting Room of the New Hampshire State Prison for Men in Concord. The graduates had many distinguished guests there to honor their achievement including Commissioner of Education Frank Edelblut, New Hampshire State Representatives David Welch (R-Kingston) and Shannon Chandley (D-Amherst).
The Corrections Special School District is a fully functioning public high school that is operated in NHDOC correctional facilities through the Division of Community Corrections, Bureau of Programs. The program is operated through an Interagency agreement between the Department of Corrections and the New Hampshire Department of Education.
During the ceremony, several students spoke about the dedication and support they received from Granite State High School teachers who worked with them from their first day and encouraged them along their way. Other speakers at the ceremony challenged the graduates to continue to focus on positive growth and to make this moment just one of many new positive steps to rehabilitation.
The students received their diplomas after completing the required number of classes and credits like in any New Hampshire public high school. Many students took classes prior to their admission to prison but the NHDOC Education Department works with them to help them complete all of their credits using certified teachers in a classroom environment like any other public school.
“Obtaining a high school diploma is a significant accomplishment for each of these men and one that will play an important part in helping them establish a successful career path.” Commissioner Hanks said.
The students marched into the ceremony to “Pomp and Circumstance” played by musicians in the prison band. They wore caps and gowns and were supported by their family members who attended to witnesses the completion of their high school education.