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Bristol County Celebrates Inmates Who Earn High School Diplomas

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Photo courtesy of Bristol County Sherrif's Office

DARTMOUTH – Two loud rounds of applause belted out from a classroom inside the Bristol County House of Correction Friday morning.

The first was for the inmates being awarded certificates of completion for earning their high school diplomas.

The second was from the inmates for their teachers who helped them accomplish their goals and get to graduation.

“You’ve opened an incredible door for yourselves,” Sheriff Thomas M. Hodgson told the group of inmates. “I’m so proud of each and every one of you. … Take time to enjoy your achievement.”

Twelve inmates recently earned their HiSET (High School Equivalency Test) certificates after completing the adult education program course of study and sitting for the five-part test. The certificates earned in jail are no different than those earned in any Adult Community Learning Center, with inmates/students doing the same work and being awarded the same diplomas from the Board of Education.

“I really hope each of you will take time to say ‘I did something good. I accomplished something great. I worked really hard,'” Sheriff Hodgson said.

The seven inmate graduates who were present for Friday’s ceremony were Daniel Pospisil, Alex Castillo, Brian Lender, Ryan Boudria, Miguel Figueroa, Glenn Sharland and Christopher Grant. Each got called up before the group to loud applause and personal congratulations from Sheriff Hodgson.

Their success is nothing new in the halls of the House of Correction. Since 2014, 166 inmates have earned their high school diplomas, including 34 in 2017. Currently, there are 14 others in classes on track for their diplomas, some of which were present at Friday’s ceremony as a little extra motivation to study hard for the final exams.

Sheriff Hodgson also took the opportunity to recognize the education team for their dedication and hard work. Team members are William Barrar, Barbara Chadwick, William Villineau, Michael Gula, John Dooley, Susan Teixeira, Michelle Ferreira, Kevin Crabtree, Leonard Rocha, Donna Branco, Jill Ussach, Deirdre Poente, James Howarth and Ana Arruda.

“I want to thank the staff,” he said. “They’re as devoted and dedicated as any out there.”

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