I have read the story of Ike Ditzenberger, the football player with Down Syndrome who scored a touch down at last weeks game. He plays at Snohomish High School, not far from where I live. It's been in all the local papers, on the news. It's definitely a 'good news story'.
I usually get teary eyed when I hear of these stories. But not this time. I read the entire article in the Seattle Times:
Ike%20Ditzenberger%20scores%20on%20the%20field%20and%20off. (Sorry, I couldn't get it to come out right.)
One paragraph caught my attention. 'Coach Mark Perry's classroom at Snohomish is across the hall from the classroom for the special needs students. He (the coach) sees them every day. He talks with them, teases them, hugs them, high-fives them, loves them." Ike is also on the wrestling team, which Perry coaches. The article goes on for another 6 columns, talking about how Ike has made a huge impact on the school, brings smiles to peoples faces and is teaching the students about compassion.
My question is, what about the other students in that special needs classroom? Are any of the other teachers or students making an effort to 'talk with them, hug them and love them'? Are any of the other kids being invited to join cheer, the yearbook staff or drama club? I'm sure the para-educators could tell the other teachers which student is creative and good with a camera. Which student likes to debate and who is the class leader.
What's being done about the other kids in Ikes class?