STOCKTON – Today, 39 juvenile offenders at N.A. Chaderjian Youth Correctional Facility (NACYCF) in Stockton formally completed their education, as 28 youths received their high school diplomas and eleven their General Education Degree (GED) certificates.
“We are very proud of the efforts and commitment of these young men, who today took a major step toward their rehabilitation,” said Dr. Pat Davies, N.A. Chaderjian High School Principal. “This ceremony is to celebrate their accomplishments, and to show them how much they are able to achieve.”
The slogan for this year’s graduation ceremony is “Fly like an Eagle.”
This year’s Valedictorian and student speaker was Connor McGrath, who was chosen by
Dr. Davies, his teachers, and other NACYCF staff for his hard work and academic dedication.
“Not only was this an accomplishment, but a struggle as well. I was considered a lost cause, and I feel like I’ve proven those doubters wrong,” said McGrath. “I want to say thank you to all the people who have supported me along the way. I will not let you down.”
The California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation (CDCR), Division of Juvenile Justice (DJJ) operates an accredited school district, which provides youth offenders with the same high school curriculum in each of its four institutions they would receive in their home community. From 2010-2015, a total of 1,070 youth have earned a high school diploma or GED at DJJ’s four high schools. In addition, 696 students earned Career Technical Education certificates for vocational programs.
“This is a coordinated effort that allows youth offenders to complete their education, and become an example of change in the community,” added Dr. Davies.
The N.A. Chaderjian High School Keynote Speaker this year was Raymond McMuray, who is a foster grandparent at NACYCF. McMuray is a former heroin addict who became a certified instructor in substance abuse and alcohol treatment. He was the founder of the First African American methadone treatment program in California.
“I’ve come full circle from my troubled past and have returned here to help our youth realize their full potential,” McMuray told the graduates.
N.A. Chaderjian YCF is located in Stockton and houses male youth offenders 18 to 23 years of age. N.A. Chaderjian High School provides instruction in basic skills, high school courses, special education and vocational programs. Youth attend school Monday through Friday.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
June 17, 2016
CONTACT: Erin Brock