This was written by my 15 year old daughter , Kiersten (who is a special needs kid with a brain injury/vision issues). She is the one on the right in the picture.
By Kiersten Munson
Did you know that a 46 year old man with Down’s Syndrome recently completed the NYC Marathon and became the first special needs person to do so ever? Not may people would think that someone with special needs could do it, but he did. This brings up a good question. Many people doubt the abilities of special needs kids. Should special needs kids be more accepted?
Special needs kids are just like other “normal “ kids. They want to participate in sports and other programs like chorus, drama and speech. I know this very well because I’ve been labeled like this before. So many people have said, “ Kiersten can’t do that because of her brain injury,” however I’ve proven doctors, teachers and some of my own friends wrong so many times. All they see is my disability and how I’m “different” than they are. People should NOT judge special needs kids just because they are different from you.
People are a bit more accepting of special needs kids but it is still prevalent today. People judge special needs kids without ever giving them a chance or getting to know them. I experience this all the time. The funny thing is that we would never do that to you because we understand.
Now, some may disagree and say that special needs kids have too many accommodations. Well, it really depends on the person, their actual diagnosis and the level of accommodations they require. I do agree that they may slow the class down but that is why there are para-educators and special needs teachers there to help them. Considering that fact, it doesn’t make any sense to say they have too many accommodations.
As you can see, there are many benefits to being more accepting of special needs kids. We each have thoughts, feelings, hopes and dreams just like everyone else. If more typical (or “normal” ) kids accepted those with special needs, our community and the world would be a much better place.