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Boys & Girls Village Graduation Ceremony Celebrates Success

On June 13th and 14th, Boys & Girls Village, a statewide leader in providing mental health treatment, permanency planning and educational services to Connecticut’s most vulnerable youth and their families, celebrated the year-end success of students attending their Charles F. Hayden School.

All of the school’s 86 students attended the two-day ‘graduation ceremony’ with many planning to head back to their hometown schools in the fall, and six students advancing onto college, trade schools and the workforce.

One graduate, Maxee, attended the school after her hometown public school felt she needed extra help that it could not provide. At Boys & Girls Village, Maxee learned how to build relationships, how to manage her feelings and thrive academically. She also gained valuable work experience in the organization’s youth-run businesses and received life-skills training for her transition into living on her own.

“I feel victory,” said Maxee as she held her diploma, “and relief, because I did it.” Maxee will attend the medical assistant program at Porter & Chester in the fall.

Charles F. Hayden School is a K-12th grade state-approved, special education school helps children grow academically, while also learning how to handle their own emotional and behavioral challenges. The school provides a comprehensive treatment team for each child, and diverse experiential activities ensure individual success. Students come from towns throughout the state, with the goal of returning to their home school whenever possible, as soon as possible.

“Students are here for individual reasons and struggles,” said Matthew Magura, who has taught Science at the school for the past five years. “This event provides an opportunity for them to recognize their accomplishments and celebrate their progress.”

Building on that trajectory, Boys & Girls Village plans to open a 5,000 square-foot Life Skills Vocational Training Center on the organization’s Milford campus to provide programs that will seek to prepare at-risk adolescents and young adults to meet the demands of adulthood. There, instruction in the areas of employment readiness, financial literacy, nutrition, health and wellness, and housing will take place to help at-risk youth transition into early adulthood. Construction on the center is planned to begin in the fall.

To learn more about Boys & Girls Village and the Charles F. Hayden School, please visit www.bgvillage.org or call 203-877-0300.

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