Howard Center Schools and Programs Host Year-End Celebrations

Burlington, VT— Across a range of ceremonies and celebrations, Howard Center schools and programs commemorated another successful academic year, celebrating the achievements of students and the dedicated commitment of educators and families.

“As this academic year ends, we applaud our students and appreciate our educators, staff, and families for their dedication,” said Beth Holden, Howard Center’s chief client services officer. “It fills us with pride to see our students prepare for their next steps.”

The celebrations showcased the community’s collective progress and milestones, featuring graduation ceremonies, student recognitions, and special events.

“These are such joyful occasions. Students and families are bursting with excitement when achievements are recognized,” said Anne Paradiso, director of school programs.

Baird School: Baird School hosted its student recognition day on Wednesday, June 12, from 9:30 AM to 12:00 PM. All 48 students participated to honor the school year’s end and the advancement of students to the next grade. This year, seven 8th graders transitioned to high school settings. Baird School, an Approved Independent School, provides an alternative educational environment for children ages 5-14 and grades K-8 where professional educators, clinicians and support staff assist students in developing skills and strategies to help them function successfully at school, home, and in their communities.

Fay Honey Knopp School: The Fay Honey Knopp School year-end celebration recognized students’ remarkable growth and progress throughout the academic year. Students’ achievements were showcased in a ceremony that highlighted individual development and accomplishments. The ceremony celebrated the personal and academic strides made by each student. One 8th grade student graduated with the remaining students advancing to their next level. Fay Honey Knopp is an Approved Independent School and alternative residential school in Rutland for students in grades 7-12.

Jean Garvin School: The Jean Garvin School hosted two celebrations on June 13. The Odyssey Program held a transition ceremony at McClure Gymnasium, honoring 26 students, including three high school graduates. The Delta Program celebrated 18 students with a breakfast for students and their families. One Delta student graduated from high school. The Jean Garvin School is an Approved Independent School that provides a therapeutic, educational program offering unique learning opportunities to inspire personal change and well-being for adolescents, ages 12-18 years, grades 7-12.

In addition to Howard Center schools, other significant programs also celebrated the end of the academic year:

Project SEARCH: On June 5, seven interns completed the 2024 Project SEARCH program. The interns, who gained valuable work skills at the University of Vermont Medical Center, made remarks about their experiences and future employment plans. Project SEARCH is a collaboration that helps interns with intellectual disabilities transition from school to work and gain and maintain employment through training, internships, and career exploration.

SUCCEED Program: SUCCEED, a post-secondary education and independent living program, will host its graduation ceremony on July 27, celebrating the graduation of two students as the program concludes its 15th year. In that time, a total of 58 students have completed the program. As the program continues to grow, eight new students from three different counties will join SUCCEED. Over the past year, staff provided consistency, expanded the student experience by participating in various community events, and supported individual student programming and college classes.

School Services Program: Our School Services team provides social work and therapeutic supports to students in every public school in Chittenden County. The team participated in many of the celebrations and ceremonies throughout the county supporting their students as another school year ended.

Congratulations to all students.