This time of year often allows us to reflect on the year that will soon pass, looking for the memorable moments and the impact we’ve had on the lives of others.
For those involved with the Special Education Foundation, one of the joys is seeing the individual impact of what we do on the lives of students with disabilities in St. Louis County.
For example, one of the projects funded through our Classroom Innovation Grants is a Handwriting Without Tears program involving music, movement, and motor planning activities to teach handwriting before introducing a writing utensil.
This strategy builds confidence in pre-writing skills and helps develop the fine motor skills necessary for handwriting. Katie Rohlfing of the Brentwood Early Childhood Center adds:
“This grant has allowed me to offer more Handwriting Without Tears groups, materials, and activities in more classrooms,” states Rohlfing. “With these materials, I have the ability to offer a variety of groups catered to each individual class. The classroom teachers would in turn are able to utilize the program on a daily basis with their students.”
Our Critical Needs program supports SSD students and their families in several meaningful ways, including food baskets during school breaks to help offset food insecurity and purchasing winter coats, hats, and gloves for students during our Critical Needs Coat Drive. SEF also provides funding for the SEF/SSD Care Closet, which helps students across St. Louis County with personal hygiene items throughout the school year.
Our new Arts in The Classroom initiative brings performing arts to students at SSD schools. In the new year, students will attend performances from The Imaginary Theater Company, The Black Rep, and the St. Louis Symphony Orchestra.
SEF has taken on this new program because the arts can inspire, empower, and include students with disabilities in ways other forms of learning may not.
We regularly highlight the impact of our programs on students’ lives in this newsletter hoping these inspire you to become more involved with SEF in our mission to help students with disabilities.
“In a society that functions optimally, those who can should naturally want to provide for those who can’t. That's how it's designed to work. I truly believe we’re here to take care of one another.”
— LeVar Burton
Your generous support of the Special Education Foundation is vital to helping us continue our work to empower our students and give them the tools they need to succeed.
I hope you’ll help make a difference during this Season of Giving by donating today.
Thank you from all of us at SEF.