Red Lake Nation News - Babaamaajimowinan (Telling of news in different places)

Two Chicago families, two experiences: Stories spotlight challenges ahead for special education


August 12, 2020

As part of a summer program for children with disabilities, Nicole Abreu’s daughter, a rising third grader at Jahn Elementary on Chicago’s North Side, has been able to receive speech language therapy, services for the visually impaired, and help with her assignments from both a teacher and a paraprofessional.

“The teacher is making the best of a very difficult situation because she has my daughter, who is a rising third grader, and also like some middle school boys. She has been working super hard to try and accommodate all of us along with the paraprofessional,” said Abreu.

Her experience hasn’t been perfect. She hasn’t received the occupational or physical therapy guaranteed by her individualized education program. While she has had some access to a social worker through assignments, they haven’t been able to have teletherapy sessions. But Abreu has had a far better time getting the necessary special education services for her daughter than Anna, a mother of a rising fourth grader with dyslexia.


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