Years later, woman earns her CW diploma; also CW Schools survey

By Linda Dillman
Staff Writer

Dec. 19 was special for Canal Winchester resident Deidra Hudson when she became a graduate of Canal Winchester Local Schools after interrupting her education at the end of her junior year in the 1980s.

“Ms. Hudson earned her diploma this year through the 22+ adult high school program,” said Canal Winchester Schools Superintendent Kiya Hunt during the Dec. 19 Canal Winchester Board of Education meeting. “The program is free to adults over age 22 and living in Ohio. As a young mom living in Cleveland in 1980, Ms. Hudson left school after completing 11th grade so she could work and raise her family. She had a fulfilling career in health care as an STNA.”

Hudson raised three daughters who all earned their high school diplomas. Hunt said the new graduate made a bucket list and put earning her high school diploma at the top of the list.

“She took courses online and tonight we are thrilled to present her diploma and congratulate her on this accomplishment,” said Hunt.

Hudson said she was proud of herself and said earning her diploma was challenging because it’s been a long time since she was in school.

“I was boxing and I came out on top,” said Hudson. “I thank you all for having me. God bless you all and live for today. I’m going to take it one day at a time because I’ve been through a lot of things. I’m going to keep moving forward.”

Ohio’s 22+High School Diploma Program is an opportunity for Ohio residents age 22 or older with no high school diploma or GED to earn a diploma at no cost. Graduates receive a fully accredited high school diploma from their local school district.

All classes are online. The Graduation Alliance highly recommends prospective students have completed at least some of their 10th grade year to enroll. There are other options for adults who have not finished ninth grade.

Your Schools, Your Voice survey
Canal Winchester Schools officials are asking community members to add their voices to a survey to set goals and create plans guiding education into the future.

The Your Schools, Your Voice survey gathers input from families, residents, community members, staff, and students. The anonymous survey takes about 10 minutes to complete and is available online in English, Spanish, French, and Nepali. The survey opened on Dec. 6 and closes on Jan. 10.

Every student has the chance to take the anonymous survey during school hours. Students spend a lot of their time at school and have valuable insights the district hopes they can provide on their experiences.

According to information provided by the district, the survey data will be used to set goals and create plans to meet those goals. By collecting input from various perspectives and experiences from community members, the information provided in the survey will help ensure goals reflect the values of the community.

The survey is anonymous and responses will not be used to identify anyone. After the survey closes, the data will be compiled to be used in the goal-setting process and shared online for community members to review.

For information about the survey, email

The school board accepted the resignation of Principal Eric Riddle and the resignation of high school teacher Todd Phillips for retirement, both effective after the end of the current school year.

“Todd Phillips has been in the district for over 30 years,” said Hunt. “He has been a staple in the district. He is very involved in music and has brought a lot of different activities to our district that separate us a little from the others.”

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