[bksvol-discuss] Re: OT: Mainstreaming

  • From: "Julie Morales" <mercy421@xxxxxxxxxxx>
  • To: <bksvol-discuss@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • Date: Tue, 22 Nov 2005 22:33:35 -0500

Hi, Sharon. I agree with you, and schools for the blind definitely have 
their place. I attended one for three years myself and am grateful for what 
I learned there. Academically, at least for me, at the school I attended, 
things sucked, for lack of a better term, but I did learn a lot of 
independent living skills that I might have learned elsewhere, but it would 
have been later on, so I'm glad I was able to learn them when I did. 
Otherwise, public school was definitely better for me, but I know that's 
just me, and every situation has its advantages. Take care.
Julie Morales
To be in your children's memories tomorrow, you need to be in their lives 
today. -- Unknown
mercy421@xxxxxxxxxxx
Windows/MSN Messenger (but not email):
mercy0421@xxxxxxxxxxx
----- Original Message ----- 
From: "Sharon Jackson" <dolly1025@xxxxxxxxxxx>
To: <bksvol-discuss@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
Sent: Tuesday, November 22, 2005 3:02 PM
Subject: [bksvol-discuss] Re: OT: Mainstreaming


I guess I will jump in.

I attended public school until I was a Sophemore then I was transferred to
TSBVI.  I lost my sight in second grade and began receiving itinerant
services in third grade.  I continued receiving itinerant services until my
school district wanted to cut back my teacher for the visually impaired's
hours and said they did not have the funds to provide me appropriate
technology.  My sophemore year I was transferred to TSBVI, 3 hours away;
meaning I was residential, and I was also enrolled into the Austin public
school district.  I graduated with blindness skills and appropriate
techniques to interact with sighted students.  I have since completed 9
years of college and now work as an itinerant teacher for the visually
impaired in New Jersey.  Some things may sound harsh with having to leave my
family during high school, but I learned my independence and now am able to
have a successful life.  It is all about what we learn and how we deal with
what we learned.

Sharon
----- Original Message ----- 
From: "Kasondra Payne" <Kassyp36@xxxxxxx>
To: <bksvol-discuss@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
Sent: Monday, November 21, 2005 5:41 PM
Subject: [bksvol-discuss] Re: OT: Mainstreaming


>I guess I will enter the debate.  I was taught in one of those classrooms
> with other blind students when I was in the early grades.  I didn't know
> any
> different then, but I see where more mainstreaming would have made some
> interactions better.  They started mainstreaming me for a few classes a
> day
> when I was in first or second grade.  I had friends who weren't blind, but
> I
> think part of my problem was in how I was taught.  I wasn't taught the
> proper positive attitudes about reading Braille, using a cane, or about
> blindness in general.  That is something Andrew will learn.  I was taught
> that Braille was inferior, the cane was goofy, and blindness was bad.
>
> I stood out academically in most subjects.  I was able to take advantage
> of
> my good memory, but I could have used more techniques.  My parents
> realized
> that I needed to be in school closer to my home.  See, when I was growing
> up, some school districts in California didn't like offering services to
> blind kids.  I was shipped off to a bigger district which left me a hour
> on
> the bus each way.  When I was in the fifth grade, my mother decided it was
> time I went to school down the street from my house.  She called a special
> meeting of officials from both districts.  She insisted that I be allowed
> to
> attend school in my home district.  She knew that I would want to be in
> extracurricular activities, have friends closer to home, and attend early
> morning religious classes in high school.  The move was accomplished after
> a
> lot of work on my mother's part.  I moved into a regular school classroom
> full-time.  I had my own personal Braillist who sat in the back of the
> room
> where she could prepare my materials.  I went to junior high and high
> school
> with itinerant teachers who I didn't always agree with or who didn't do
> their jobs properly
>
> Things turned out all right.  I read a poem at my graduation that I
> composed, and I became the first blind student to graduate from the Folsom
> Cordova Unified School District.  I enjoyed school, but I determined that
> some things would be different for my children.  I believe that children
> should be mainstreamed as much as possible, but they should get the help
> they need.  I don't always care for self-contained classrooms because they
> tend to separate some students off from the rest of the school.  Blind
> kids
> need to be given high expectations, just like their sighted classmates.
> These are just a few of my thoughts.  I am sorry this went on so long.
> Thanks.
>
> Kasondra Payne
>
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