Your stories: compassion and advocacy

Many, many thanks to Amber O. for sharing this beautiful story. Her daughter has nystagmus and optic nerve hypoplasia – Ann Z

⚠️WARNING ⚠️Mom Brag/Soap box Post:

Background: Meg is a 7th grader that has low vision, her glasses help but do not give her perfect vision.

7th grader Meg in a red dress and red glasses climbing on a playground structure

A few days ago in one of Meg’s classes a substitute teacher asked her to move away from her front seat (this is a written accommodation in every class). She advocated for herself(as she has done whole life proudly), explaining why she needed to sit in the front. The sub still would not listen. That’s when her entire class stood up and advocated for her. Informing the teacher why she should be allowed to sit up front.

I always hear complaints of teenagers being selfish and rude but I’m not seeing it (this being one example this year). I did ask her if she got made fun of in school, she said that no one makes fun of her except her close group of friends but “they have permission to tease me.” This is the generation that is holds our future, teens who advocate for their friends in need despite the whiplash are superheroes in my book. 

I’m not sure of the end result of where she ended up in the class. My girl finished the day knowing that she has an army of classmates that has her back and I know that my girl can advocate for herself with no shame.
Advocacy is such an important tool to teach kids whether they have disabilities or not. Teaching kids to recognize equality in every aspect of learning or living. Teaching kids to see all humans are treated with the same compassion as the next despite how they look, talk, learn or move. Teaching kids compassion and advocacy forms better humans than teaching kids only book knowledge.


One response to “Your stories: compassion and advocacy

  1. Absolutely wonderful to see youngsters show understanding and compassion. I’m a retired PT who used to go into 1st and 2nd grades once a month to present a disability awareness program to help youngsters understand differences. When I retired I wrote a children’s book, MONTY THE MENACE, about vision. Rowe Publishing recently took it over and will publish my next two books about hearing and mobility. Love the response to MONTY and hope that it does increase understanding of differences.


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