This Journey Our Life

Singing for Joy

Camelia, least restrictive environment, school for the blind, Special Needs, Special Needs Parenting, Visual ImpairmentRachel
Much has taken place over the past several months of my blogging hiatus.  The break began unintentionally, but I've enjoyed a much needed time of rejuvenation.  I plan to return to writing here again, and I have much to share in the weeks ahead.  Today, I wanted to begin by sharing a brief update on Cami.

As many of you remember, we moved this summer in order for Cami to attend the South Carolina School for the Deaf and Blind (SCSDB). When she was accepted as a student in August, we learned of her exact placement  in the school (based upon her evaluations and testing).

She attends the special education program offered at the SCSDB.  It is still a part of the SCSDB, and just like each of the other separate schools (the School for the Blind and School for the Deaf) it is in a separate building on the campus. Within the school, classrooms are divided by those who are visually impaired and those who are deaf, with the majority of students having more than one disability.  This school offers more specialized instruction, and each class is taught by a special education teacher who is also a teacher of their respective field (blind or deaf). 

Cami has been thriving in this environment which is similar to her placement last school year, this time with a program and education more suitable and individually tailored to each of her specific needs.

In a recent re-evaluation meeting with her educators, we discussed giving her more opportunities to develop her skills, allowing her to grow and progress as much possible.  This was addressed mainly because  she is considered to be a high functioning student in her classroom setting, and they don't want to restrict her potential.  They specifically mentioned giving her more opportunities to interact with students who attend the School for the Blind, its atmosphere more like a mainstream classroom setting.  

We agreed.

And today she embarked on this path of opportunity, taking a tiny first step toward a new direction.

For the first time, Cami will be participating in an extracurricular activity.

When her teacher contacted us to see if this would be something we'd be interested to have Cami involved in, there was no question in our minds that it would be a perfect fit for her.

Cami is now a singer in the chorus at the School for the Blind.

As a 4th grader, Cami is one of the youngest among the middle school through high school age participants, but we are excited to see her eagerly embrace this new challenge. Her teacher sat with her during today's rehearsal and will work toward having Cami sit through future rehearsals independently.  

We continue to thank the Lord for allowing Cami to progress as much as she has, and we continue to receive assurance that she is right where she belongs.