A message from a parent
Every day, as a parent to a child with a special need, I question if I’m making the right choices for her. Is she receiving the best education possible? Am I supporting her enough or too much at home? My goal is always to help her learn and grow to the best of her ability. On this journey, results don’t come overnight. It’s easy to get discouraged. I would like to share something awesome that happened for my daughter with the hope that you will be inspired to keep pushing forward. Keep faith that your child CAN and WILL be successful to the best of THEIR ability.
My daughter is 16 has an intellectual disability. She is in a Life Skills Special Ed. Program at her High School. She spends the majority of her day receiving instruction with this class. This year she had the opportunity to enroll in a couple of General Education elective courses. One of the classes she chose was American Sign Language.
For the class final students were given a three-part assignment. They had to create a family tree – a poster board presentation, a written summary and a presentation of this information in sign language in front of the class.
As part of the accommodations given to my daughter the teacher did not require she do the class presentation portion of the assignment. On the day of the final, my daughter decided she would give her presentation. She looked around, said to herself, “Other students can do it, so can I”. She then, to the extent she was able, gave a small presentation to the teacher. She was nervous and stumbled here and there but she did it! She made the choice to push through her fear and doubt and did her best. HER best. What more can a parent ask for. I could not have been more proud. She faced a fear and challenged herself to complete the assignment just as any other student would.
One of her biggest desires is to be “just like the other kids”. She wants to fit in and participate like any other child. On this day, not only did she challenge herself to do just that but she challenged her teacher and me to expect more. She said loud and clear, I CAN do it!