Not everyone has the same story. Some students show up to school every day and can effortlessly pass all their classes, while others may need more help to achieve the same success. However, these disadvantaged students haven't always received the attention they needed to help them succeed.
In the 1970s, less than 50 years ago, congress passed a bill referred to as IDEA, or Individuals with Disabilities Education Act. IDEA was created to provide free accommodations to students with disabilities that need extra help in the classroom.
Disabilities go beyond mental health. Some of the services offered for children with disabilities include:
Physical and occupational therapy
Orientation and mobility
It is important to the Cherokee County School District that students with disabilities receive the help they need. Not all disabilities are visible and having a helping hand can make an incredible impact on students. The Competitive High School Options in Careers in Education (CHOICE) program is dedicated to helping disadvantaged high school seniors get back on track for graduation. Whether it be learning disabilities, physical disabilities, or tough luck outside of school, CHOICE gives teachers the resources to help students in need.
It's not just about the classes though. Teachers invest in the students personally to make sure they know they have someone that cares about their progress and wellbeing. Sometimes students need to know they have an advocate to push them to be and do their best. From 2016 – 2018, three Cherokee County schools participated in the program:
Cherokee High School
Creekview High School
Woodstock High School
The success of this program is undeniable. In the 2016-2017 school year, 42 of the 43 targeted students graduated high school – that's a 98% success rate.
Graduating from high school is a significant goal to accomplish, whether the students go straight into the work field or into higher education. With this program, new possibilities are opened up as students that may have previously thought they couldn't complete high school, now see that they are capable of anything they set their minds to.
Disabilities don't mean you are less; they just mean that you might need some help and guidance along the way.
So, how can you help? Donate to CCEF so you can impact the students and teachers of the Cherokee County School District or learn more about us!
If you want to learn more about how the CHOICE program has impacted students, click here.