Mr. Sean's Story


I am not a parent of a child at Rise nor do I have any children of my own yet. However, I always tell my friends and family and even strangers about what a special place the Rise School of Denver is. I am beyond lucky to have an opportunity to work at such a special place with children who change my life every day.

When I describe my field of work to my family, friends, or just anyone who asks in general, they always tell me that I must be so patient and that it is just amazing what I am doing everyday as well as that the students I teach must be so lucky to learn from me every day. I understand all these comments and I am very appreciative! However, I always tell people it is not me who is teaching these children. They are the ones who are teaching me something new and changing my life each day. So really when you think about it, I am the one that is lucky to be able to be involved in these children’s lives. People also mention to me how I probably have tough days because of the behaviors that might be present or just from running around with children all day. In all honesty, yes there are tough days. However, every day has wonderful rewards. It’s when you see a child who can’t walk take her first steps or walk without help on her own for the first time. It’s when a nonverbal student of yours starts to babble or form words clearly. It’s when your students achieve one of his personal or academic goals. All of these things, plus many more, outweigh any challenging moments that I might have at school.

When I was about 10 years old, I told my parents that I wanted to help children and people with disabilities. I will never forget what my parents told me. They said, “ Sean, you have a special talent and that is having a big heart and following your dreams and don't ever forget that.” Well I am living one of my life goals and I am getting closer to another as I am getting my master’s degree in early childhood special education. I am very excited to be the best I can be every day and help these children be the best they can be too!

Inspiration is the only word that is needed to describe the Rise School of Denver. It all starts once you step into the Rise building. Right away you can feel the tremendous amount of compassion, love and support for one another. Whether you are part of the staff, a parent, a relative, or a student you are a part of our Rise Family and always will be. What makes Rise so special? I believe it starts with its exceptional model. Children, regardless of abilities, are learning together and from one another in the same classroom. It’s truly beautiful to see how all the children are unaware of differences and they also have this advanced knowledge of compassion. They go running to their friends with hugs when they’re sad, they help them with answers they might not understand yet, and they love without boundaries. Everybody experiences hardship in one way or another, but when you come to Rise, you get to see children with disabilities work so hard on tasks that may seem easy to you and me. You see them doing this with their best buddy by their side, helping and cheering them on. Being a part of Rise, we are able to witness this true gift every day, which is the foundation of our community and I am lucky to call The Rise School of Denver my family.

Just recently the church in which we are housed voted to sell the property to Rise! With more than 120 families on our wait list, the need to expand is overwhelmingly present. The purchase would allow for a lot of important upgrades, including the addition of 4 classrooms. So, on this Colorado Gives Day I'm asking for donations, large or small, to help support the expansion of the Rise School of Denver. ←Back to Support Rise