Pandemic changes Special Needs learning in a positive way

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WACO, Texas – The pandemic altered the way many of these students live and learn. Those changes, for the most part, have been positive.

“Being back in the classroom has helped to provide the structure that many of our Special Education students need. Our department has added staff support to assist with instruction and other needs,” says Charlotte Davis, Waco ISD Executive Director of Special Needs.

When students were sent home at the beginning of the pandemic, it was a big change for most – especially those in the Special Needs program. Now that they are back, Davis said the biggest advancement through the use of technology is parental engagement.

“So as far as technology goes, the greatest benefit that I’ve seen to the technology that we have in place now is the level of parent participation,” she said. “It is actually increased due to the use of technology and Zoom meetings. As you know, parent participation has a great impact on student success in the classroom. So we’ve really had a direct correlation there.”

With the students now fully back in the classroom, Davis said it has been quite amazing and heartwarming to see her students back with the teachers that make such an impact.

“Our department staff has added lots of extra support to assist with instruction and other needs. And so, it’s been a joy to see the teachers and the students reunited, and all coming together back into their classrooms again,” she said.

Davis ended by saying they are looking forward to more in-person parent meetings in the new year, and they are excited to start getting students back into the Special Olympics.

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