Students Receive Maine HS Diplomas in Blaine House Ceremony

Despite “disrupted” education, students graduate from high school

AUGUSTA – The Maine Department of Education awarded seven high school diplomas in a Blaine House ceremony on Thursday to students whose education was interrupted for various reasons. It was the largest group of students to receive state diplomas since the Legislature established it in 2007.

The law allows the state to issue the diplomas to students whose education is disrupted due to hospitalization, homelessness and other causes. The diploma is intended for students who meet the necessary requirements, but are not able to meet the graduation requirements of their local school system because of the disruption.

All of the diploma recipients demonstrated that they met the content standards of the Maine Learning Results. The include:

  • Nicole Adams lives and works in Monmouth. She aspires to be a writer and anticipates attending college this fall.
  • Mikayla Damon of Portland anticipates beginning her college course work this fall. Mikayla is an avid reader and aspires to work in the mental health field.
  • Benjamin Felker plans to own and operate a car restoration business.
  • Alexander King of Freedom attended the Waldo Regional Technical Center where he became a proficient welder. Alex is a published poet and hopes to move right into the work force and/or become an apprenticed welder.
  • Jesse Knox of Windsor and his brother operate their own lawn care business and plan to expand their business outside of his home community.
  • Ryan Tolman of Ellsworth loves working with computers and would like to become a computer technician or programmer.

Acting Education Commissioner Angela Faherty was joined by First Lady Karen Baldacci in awarding the diplomas.

“This gives every kid a second chance, for whatever reason,” Baldacci said. “And every kid matters.”

“These students, by this milestone step they are taking today, are exemplifying what we mean when we talk about ‘multiple pathways’ for students,” Faherty said. “We don’t all get there by the same journey. We each have successes and obstacles to overcome. These students have demonstrated that they have achieved mastery of Maine’s learning standards in their unique ways – and with the continuous support of their families, friends and dedicated educators. We are proud of each graduate and congratulate them on their persistence and personal courage which has earned them this well-deserved diploma.”

Students King and Adams also made brief remarks.

For high resolution photos of the graduates, go here.

Read more information about Public Law 451 and the Maine Diploma.

For more information, visit the Maine Department of Education.