Future Reflections Spring/Summer 2003
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Maureen Callaghan, Instructional Assistant,
Nutley, New Jersey
Teacher: Maureen Callaghan,
Student: Brittani Brendel
School: Lincoln School, Nutley, New Jersey
October 14, 2002
Dear Future Reflections Editors:
Maureen Callaghan, instructional assistant, and her student Brittani Brendel.
I am writing this letter to thank Maureen Callaghan for the noted difference she has made in Brittani Brendel’s life.
Mrs. Callaghan has been Brittani’s aide for about three years. She helped her adjust to a new school as a pre-schooler, then moved up to kindergarten with her, and on to first grade. She is presently working with her in second grade.
I taught Brittani in kindergarten in a regular education class with three other included children with special education needs in a classroom of eighteen other children. Brittani learned how to use her cane with Joe Cutter, and Mrs. Callaghan took lessons right alongside her. She gave up her lunchtime to work with Brittani on orientation outside on the playground as well as back and forth to school. On weekends and during the summer, Mrs. Callaghan obtained permission from Brittani’s parents to take her swimming, to visit her classmates, and to museums in order to expand Brittani’s knowledge of the world around her. Mrs. Callaghan was instrumental in obtaining funds to buy a computer for Brittani that would enable her to write in Braille. Then she searched for accessible Web sites, and helped Brittani learn how to communicate with her classmates with computer technology.
Mrs. Callaghan has devoted much of her own time to help Brittani attain a firm academic foundation and, in my opinion, has contributed to the growth of Brittani Brendel in all areas.
Kindergarten teacher at Lincoln School
The primary purpose for publishing teacher recognition letters is to spotlight hard-working professionals who deserve public recognition. But these letters are more than that—they are blueprints for parents, teachers, and administrators who are often unsure about the role of the specialized professionals who work with blind students. If you know a teacher of the visually impaired, O&M instructor, teacher’s assistant, Braille transcriber, etc. who deserves a public “thank you,” please send your Teacher Recognition Nomination Letter (with, if available, a photo of the teacher and/or student) to: Future Reflections, 1800 Johnson Street, Baltimore, Maryland 21230; or e-mail to Mrs. Cheadle at <Bcheadle@nfb.org>. Be sure to include the name and address of the sender, the teacher’s name, the student’s name, the name of the school or school district, and specific details about why this person deserves recognition. The letters should be no less than one typed page, and may be up to three pages. If your letter is published, we will send you extra copies of the issue free of charge at your request.
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