The graduates beamed and their families and friends cheered as the diplomas and certificates were handed out to the well-deserving, hard working graduating class of the Archuleta County High School (ACHS) and the GED program sponsored by the Archuleta County Education Center. Held at Centennial Park on Thursday, May 26, the graduates and their families enjoyed a barbecue dinner prepared by board members and staff after the ceremony. Everyone seemed to enjoy the evening’s event, including the children and the many pets that were also in attendance.
This year’s graduation was the 13th and final graduation for the Archuleta County High School, an alternative high school program that has served students whose needs precluded them from being successful in a traditional high school program. The GED program will continue as in past years.
The closing of Archuleta County High School will not leave students without options. Collaboration during this past school year between the Education Center, District 50 JT, and Pueblo/Southwestern Community College has created the opportunity to bring PCC to the Education Center next year. The collaborations, which include the current live video-teleconferencing link with the College of Eastern Utah, will bring opportunities for local citizens to earn college credits, certificates and degrees without leaving Pagosa Springs. PCC will also be providing an alternative high school program with a work-based curriculum through the ACT WorkKeys program. The programming will be very similar to that used by ACHS for the past three years. With the arrival of GOAL Academy this summer, local high school age students will be afforded several options for earning a high school diploma.
Students earning their high school diploma from ACHS were Josh Dikes, Melissa Hollowell, Austin Jackson, Taylor Jackson, Leah Justice, Jessica Lane, Jonathan Linde, Irene Madrid, Jefferson Walsh, Willie Wilkins and Lynzee Yager.
GED graduates included James Abbott III, Dustin Andreas, Garret Gholson, Ashlee Granados, Jordan Harrell, David Krygowski, Shannon Rogers, Charlene Tuller, Amy Wilson and Dominic Wilson.
Speaking for the ACHS graduates was Leah Justice, and speaking for the GED graduates was Ashlee Granados.
The Archuleta County Education Center congratulates all of their outstanding graduates in the 2011 class.