Governor Lynch ' s Summit on Increasing NH ' s High School Graduation Rate To be Held Monday in Concord

From the Office of Governor John Lynch

CONCORD - Gov. John Lynch ' s Summit on Increasing New Hampshire ' s High School Graduation Rate will be held Monday in Concord, with 250 educators, elected officials, parents, students, and business and community leaders from across New Hampshire gathering to discuss strategies for increasing New Hampshire ' s high school graduation rate.

" People from across New Hampshire have shown strong interest in participating in the Summit and in working together to make sure every New Hampshire child receives a high school diploma, " Gov. Lynch said. " I am looking forward to a good discussion, with real recommendations for moving forward. "

Gov. Lynch, joined by bipartisan legislative co-sponsors, has proposed legislation to increase the state ' s compulsory attendance age from 16 to 18.

" Last year an estimated 2,300 of our students dropped out of high school. We must make it clear to our young people that we are not going to give up on them; or let them give up on themselves. We must change the law and require our children to stay in school until age 18, " Gov. Lynch said.

" I recognize that changing the compulsory attendance age is only one part of the solution. Across our state, there are programs working successfully to keep our young people in school. This summit is an important opportunity for us to share ideas and consider what other steps we must take to ensure every New Hampshire child receives a high school diploma, " Gov. Lynch said.

The Summit will begin at 9 a.m. At approximately 9:30 a.m., participants will break up into eight groups for a series of discussions, led by moderated panels, on strategies for increasing New Hampshire ' s high school graduation rate. In the afternoon, each session will report to the larger group. The Department of Education will develop a written report from the Summit.

Group 1: Alternative Learning

* Jim Schubert, PASS (Program Alternative to Secondary School ) Program, Manchester
* Pat Prescott, Franklin High School
* Leslie Haslam, Adult Education, Exeter School District
* Cindy Naiditch, Workforce Opportunity Council
* Lisa Lavoie, North Country Charter Academy

Group 2: Career & Technical Education

* Judy King, Tech Prep Coordinator, Department of Education
* Steve Guyer, Community and Technical Education Director (Wolfeboro)
* Commissioner William Simonton, NHCTC System

Group 3: Internships and Apprenticeships

* Paul Holloway, NHCTC Board of Trustees, Dreher-Holloway
* Micheline Dufort, New Hampshire Restaurant and Lodging Association
* Jeff Rose, BAE Systems
* Richard Anagnost, Workforce Opportunity Council, developer
* Kevin Cash, New Hampshire Building Trades Council
* Dick Ingram, CEO Portsmouth Chamber of Commerce

Group 4: Community Social Services Supports

* Fran Meffen, Dover School Counselor & President, NHSCA
* Glenn Quinney, Manchester Mental Health Center
* Cynthia Billings, PlusTime
* Jack Lightfoot, New Hampshire Child & Family Services

Group 5: Law Enforcement/Safe Learning Environments/Juvenile Justice

* Portsmouth Safe School Team: Brad Russ, Mike Magnet, Bob Sullivan, Bob Lister
* Karen Soule, Superintendent

Group 6: High School Re-Design and School Approval Standards

* Mary Heath, deputy commissioner, Department of Education
* Fred Bramante, State Board of Education
* Tom Brennen, Superintendent, Kearsarge Regional
* Patrick Corbin, Principal, Nashua North
Group 7: K through 8: Pre-High School Years

* Richard Lowney, Boys and Girls Clubs of New Hampshire
* Virginia Barry, University System of New Hampshire
* Stephen Zadravec, Assistant Superintendent, Portsmouth
* Barbara Krysiac, Project Mentor

Group 8: Roles and Responsibilities of Students and Parents

* Heather Thalheimer, Parent Information Center
* NH JAG Students
* PASS Students

The " Governor ' s Summit on High School Graduation: 16-18 - Reducing the Drop-Out Rate in New Hampshire " will be held from 8 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. at the New Hampshire Technical Institute in Concord.