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Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Top 5 Teacher in America, John's YCAP Teacher

John's YCAP, (Young Children's Autism Program)Suzette, is a finalist for America's top teacher on Live with Kelly and Michael. I am so excited for her. She took John in when he was spending his time running up and down the halls of his former school. He did absolutely no work while in his first year of first grade. He was held back because he didn't do anything for the entire year. Not only that, but he would not talk to anyone outside of our immediate family. She got him to whisper and then talk out loud to other people. At John's ARD (individual education plan meeting) the other day, the people all laughed at the thought of John not speaking to anyone. He is the complete opposite now. She even had him in the general education classroom for most of the day. He was only in YCAP for the last half hour or so of the day to do the work he still refused to do in class. She is a wonderful teacher who pulls the best out of these special needs children. She moved to the Junior High to open a much needed Junior High CAP program when John entered third grade. When sent back to our neighborhood school where he was before he once again had the teachers wrapped around his little finger. He would sit and do nothing all day. There were times, they told me, that he had four teachers around him trying to get him to do work or calm down. A four to one ratio is unsustainable when it is four teachers to one student. John was moved to another YCAP program half way through the year. His teacher now is also wonderful, but John still only spends a little time now and then, when he is behaving, in the science and math general education classroom. This link is a local news story on her. She will be appearing on Live with Kelly and Michael in May 2nd and the winner will be announced on May 6th. I'm sure all top 5 deserve to be the winner but I really hope Suzette wins. She definately has worked hard for it. Oh, and I forgot, John attended summer camp one year and she got him to swim enough to get to the side of the pool. This is a huge feat considering that John is terrified of water. When we turn on the sink in the kitchen he runs away with his ears covered. Bath's are impossible and showers are difficult. The funny thing is John will take a shower even though it is running water (which is the worst for him), get in a pool although he clings to the side, but he refuses to sit in a bathtub.

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