School hosts disability panel for parents of children with special needs

Ruby Lueras, Bear Facts Contributor

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For the first time, the school is hosting a disability panel and discussion in order to talk to parents whose children receive special services on Wednesday, April 25 from 6:30-8pm. The event’s goal is to ensure parents are informed about all the potential help available to them.

“These avenues haven’t been in one place before so people may not know to even seek them out,” Peter Nadler, Special Ed Department Head, said.

Three professional presentation speakers will be present at the event. These speakers specialize in the disability system, so having them in one space will make parents aware of all help offered through the school. This panel not only focuses on help inside school though, but for students who wish to go “beyond” high school as well.

“Our special education staff provide transition services to students based on individual need. […] Each student will have different needs in life after high school [and] unless schools provide brief explanations of benefits, parents would need to seek out information on their own,” said Susan Coleman, Assistant Superintendent for Student Services.

Transition services act as a transition into the real world for students with special needs, and for each student this is different. These services are just one example on what this panel and discussion may inform parents about.

Since the panel and discussion format is new to this year, the April 25 event will have a different feel to it as compared to prior years. One mother, who has attended the event in the past, looks forward to the new format, and feels encouraged to attend again.

“My son is a junior [who receives special care] I have learned something at every Parent Cafe I have attended, which is why I keep going back. […] I am definitely looking forward to the panel discussion [this year],” Cathy Danial, mother of a student with special needs, said. “[These nights] are an opportunity to reflect in the big picture and what your goals are for your child.”

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