The Corson Family
Words cannot express the love and gratitude we have for The Rise School. It's our first year at Rise and we really don't know what we would have done without this amazing school. Our Daughter, Norrie, is 4, and is unable to walk or talk. Her only diagnosis is global developmental delays. We spent the first two years of her life searching for answers and doing all the therapy we could. Unable to find an answer, we decided that we needed to get the best therapy for her, and find a school that accepted her and all the wonderful things she has to offer. At the age of three, we went through Child Find, and she was placed in the public school system, where we were hopeful that all her therapy and social needs would be met. Unfortunately, it was far from that. Norrie was set aside from the rest of the class. It was known that she was the special needs child in the class. One time, she was the only child that didn't get invited to a birthday party. My heart was not only breaking for her, but scared for her future. That was when we decided that we needed to find a place where she was accepted and would be included in all activities, and not left aside. Our in-home occupational therapist told us about The Rise School. Immediately, I called and set up a tour. After spending a couple hours there, we knew that was where Norrie needed to be. I remember being in awe with how all the kids played and did activities together, but at their own level. Everyone was included. It gave us this overwhelming sense of hope-- Something we hadn't felt in a long time. We put her on the waitlist that day. Our prayers were answered when we got the call that there was an open spot for her in the Kangaroo class.
These last few months have been life-changing, not only for Norrie, but for our whole family. We all see the astonishing amount of progress she's made. In the beginning of the year, I didn't think that Norrie would ever walk. Now, I'm seeing her take independent steps on her own. She has gone from using only a few signs at random, to making requests using her iPad. The most amazing part is seeing her interact with her peers. She's surrounded by teachers and children that truly love her. It warms my heart every time we walk into her classroom and the other children yell, "Yay, Norrie is here!” They don't see her as being different. They just see her as their friend. Also, I can't say enough about her amazing teachers. They have become like family to Norrie. I always tell people it's like she has a group of angels that teach, care for her, and celebrate her accomplishments every day. Last month she was out of school for a few days, and the minute she walked into the classroom, her teacher got down on her hands and knees to make eye contact with her and told her how much she missed her, and how happy she was to see her. I left, crying happy tears that day. We are so fortunate to have found The Rise School. It is such a wonderful place for our sweet Norrie and all children. We put Norrie's typically developing little sister on the waitlist for next year, and we ask you to support this incredible school, so that in their campaign to expand, they can serve more families like ours, and provide them with hope and love!