Personal experience raises respect for those working in special education

Blaize Klossner, Webmaster

On April 10th, I participated in the annual Special Olympics regional competition as a volunteer. I was super excited to hang out with the athletes and watch them succeed through competition. I thought I was in for a very relaxing day being out of school, but I was extremely wrong.

The day started with a teacher informing me I would be paired up with a student who requires extra attention. Of course, at the time I was up for the challenge, but I did not understand the patience and attentiveness at all times. The athlete had some needs that I have never experienced and for the most part, I had no idea what to do. Luckily, the teachers sitting behind me taught me techniques to help the student cope. This calmed him down tremendously. Almost immediately following that event, my buddy wrapped his arm around mine and cuddled up next to me. We had many experiences together that taught me the kind of care that goes in to managing and comforting one of our own bulldog athletes.

This experience gave me the utmost respect for special education teachers and what they go through on a daily basis. I thought it was hard to keep my cool and patience while assisting my buddy in the course of five hours, but I could not imagine helping 20 kids, eight hours a day, five days a week. The amount of patience, control, and skills that these teachers have is incredible and should be respected and admired by everyone. Coming just after a week after National Paraprofessional Day, tell a special education teacher thank you for everything they do.