Twenty-two inmates of the Idaho Correctional Facility received their General Education Development certificate behind bars Thursday as part of an annual graduation ceremony at the ICC. Forty-seven other inmates received certification in various vocational trades, such as Braille transcription, carpentry and masonry.
"We've learned how to make the best of a bad situation," GED student speaker James Hill reminded his fellow graduates. "We're worked really hard for this."
ICC, a 2,100 bed facility, is operated privately by the Corrections Center of America, through a partnership with the Idaho Department of Correction. Controversy has cast a long shadow on ICC, including a $155 million lawsuit in March 2010 accusing CCA of allowing a culture of violence. Shortly following the suit Phillip Valdez and Daniel Prado were removed from their positions as warden and assistant warden at ICC.