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Academic Achievements Prepare Offenders for Reentry

Timothy C. Ward
Director of Public Affairs: 
Joan Heath
Contact Name: 
Lori Benoit
Contact Email:
July 14, 2022
Academic Achievements Prepare Offenders for Reentry
More than 1,400 High School Equivalency Diplomas Earned

FORSYTH, Ga. – The Georgia Department of Corrections (GDC) has announced for Fiscal Year 2022 (FY22), 1,489 High School Equivalency Diplomas (HSED) were earned by offenders, representing an increase in 300 of these academic achievements year-over-year. The HSED program provides educational services catered to offenders who were not able to complete their high school education prior to incarceration.

“This accomplishment marks a huge milestone for these offenders, and we are proud of the dedicated staff who supported them each step of the way,” said Commissioner Timothy C. Ward. “Earning a high school equivalency diploma is an important first step as they continue in their journey toward successful reentry.”

During the HSED program, students must pass tests in four basic subject areas: Mathematics, Language Arts, Science and Social Studies. Additionally, within GDC’s Academic Education unit, eight educational programs are offered to include, Title 1, special education, literacy remedial reading, adult basic education, GED, charter HS, English as second language, and braille.

In 2015, the GDC began a partnership with Foothills Education Charter High School to offer offenders under the age of 21, an opportunity to obtain a High School Diploma.  The program offers offenders an individualized, self-paced, learning environment that delivers coursework based on mastery learning and is facilitated by accredited teachers. Through the partnership, 410 offenders have earned a High School Diploma since its inception.

For more information about Foothills Charter High School please visit


About the Georgia Department of Corrections (GDC)

The Georgia Department of Corrections (GDC) has one of the largest prison systems in the U.S. and is responsible for supervising nearly 47,000 state prisoners. It is the largest law enforcement agency in the state with approximately 9,000 employees. For more information on the GDC, call 478-992-5247 or visit

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