A Graduation Ceremony Together


A Graduation Ceremony Together


PLATTSBURGH —  There are few moments that top graduation here at CVES.

The Special Education division’s ceremony this year was unique and made life-long memories.

For the first time, the Plattsburgh and Mineville campuses came together to have one big graduation at E. Glenn Giltz Auditorium at SUNY Plattsburgh.

Unique circumstances led to the joint ceremony since there was just one graduate from the Yandon-Dillon Center. Even if this ends up being the only time a graduation of this kind takes place, everyone will cherish the experience.

“These young adults were so excited and just beside themselves,” Yandon-Dillon Special Education Principal Dr. Grace Stay said. “They were so excited and really taking in that special day. The formality and beauty of the setting really spoke to them. The ceremony was gorgeous and perfect.”

THE NEXT CHAPTER

During his closing remarks, District Superintendent of Champlain Valley Educational Services Dr. Mark Davey asked our graduates to remember their successes and always know they will have a home at CVES.

He continued by saying everyone is excited to see where the graduates’ journeys take them next. Then came the most exciting moment of them all — moving their tassels from the right side of their caps to the left making their graduation official.

This marked the moment all the graduates as well as their families and teachers had been waiting for.

“The real amazing part about our graduation day is it’s really personalized based on the challenges our students have to overcome and the successes they have taken in during their journeys,” Director of Special Education Matt Slattery said.

“I loved every part about the day. The fact we were able to bring our campuses together this year was even better. The ceremony was sign of achievement and a chance to dream about bright futures.”

A RETURN TO NORMALCY

For the first time since 2019, this year’s graduation was held with no COVID-19 restrictions. All family members could be present, and students received full support from their component districts with many school superintendents, principals and CSE chairs attending the event.

For Samuel Anderson (Boquet Valley), the lone graduate from Yandon-Dillon in Mineville, joining what is traditionally the ceremony for the William A. Fritz Center in Plattsburgh was a perfect fit.

“During his time with CVES, he actually spent time in Plattsburgh as well as Mineville, so he knew all these students he was graduating with,” Dr. Stay said. “I am very glad it worked out the way it did. His family was extremely happy with the unique circumstances, and we were so happy for Sam.”

Anderson was joined by many other graduates from the Plattsburgh campus on stage including Elizabeth Boyle (Boquet Valley), Daniel Desourdy (Saranac), Tyler Houghtaling (Northern Adirondack), Wyatt King (Northern Adirondack), Jesse Maloney (Saranac), Karen McKee (Peru), Dustin Mesek (Beekmantown), Nicholas Miller (Beekmantown), Keisha Niles (Willsboro), and Izabella Savage (Northeastern Clinton).

“The most amazing part of our graduation day is how it is personalized to each of our graduates and the challenges they have overcome in their educational journey with us at CVES,” Slattery said.

“I loved every part about the day. The fact we were able to bring our campuses together this year was even better. The ceremony was a sign of achievement and a chance to dream about bright futures.”


Read the full “Annual Report” here.

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