THERE WERE MORE THAN 14-THOUSAND HIGH SCHOOL GRADUATES IN MAINE LAST YEAR…..
BUT THIS YEAR THERE IS ONE YOUNG WOMAN WHO HAS THE DISTINCT HONOR OF BEING HANDED THE FIRST-EVER ":MAINE DIPLOMA":…..
THE AWARD WAS GIVEN AT A CEREMONY AT THE BLAINE HOUSE IN AUGUSTA TODAY, WITH HOPES THAT THE NEGATIVE STEREOTYPING OF ALTERNATIVE EDUCATION CAN BE ERASED…..
":To bestow upon Chelsea J. Edgar, her high school diploma.":
HER ENERGY IS INVIGORATING, HER MOTIVATION, INSPIRING. IN FOUR YEARS THIS YOUNG WOMAN FROM WHITEFIELD HAS EARNED AN EDUCATION ONCE THOUGHT OUT OF REACH.
":Time to turn this around.":
18 YEAR OLD CHELSEA EDGAR TURNED THINGS AROUND ALRIGHT…
":My dad died when I was very young, I was 10 and I wasn’t able to grieve the proper way, I didn’t know how to grieve.":
WHICH LED TO ANXIETY PROBLEMS. EDGAR SAYS HER IMMUNE FALTERED. SHE GOT SICK A LOT AND MISSED A LOT OF SCHOOL. ALTERNATIVE EDUCATION GOT HER BACK ON TRACK FRESHMAN YEAR…
":it’s not for anybody. My program was not like, oh, let’s baby you the whole time let me hold your hand.":
EDGAR SAYS THE STIGMA SURROUNDING THE WORD, ALTERNATIVE MAKES HER MAD.
":attending alternative education does not mean we’re slow, stupid or any of those things. It means we learn differently.":
A YEAR AGO EDGAR MAY NOT HAVE BEEN HANDED HER DIPLOMA BECAUSE SHE WAS NOT TECHNICALLY ATTENDING A HIGH SCHOOL, BUT A NEW LAW LETS THE DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION ISSUE DIPLOMAS TO STUDENTS WHO HAVE EXPERIENCED EDUCATIONAL DISRUPTION AS LONG AS THEY PROVE THAT THEY MEET STATE STANDARDS…
":Some of these young people might be hospitalized, incarcerated or have been homeless.":
":I think alternatives when done right help supplement, help those areas for the kids that can’t make it through the regular setting.":
DURING THE BLAINE HOUSE CEREMONY TEARS WERE SHED…
":I am very proud of Chelsea.":
A MOTHER, SO PROUD HER DAUGHTER NEVER LET GO OF HER DREAMS.
":I followed my dreams I didn’t let them go no matter what I made them my own. (chelsea smiling.)
EDGAR HAS PLANS TO ATTEND KENNEBEC VALLEY COMMUNITY COLLEGE IN THE FALL TO STUDY MASSAGE THERAPY…..