Disabilities don’t define: “The Abbott and Fields Story”

Feature Photo By: Sara Elouadi-  Abbott (left) and Fields (right) pose for a picture. Both are seniors and have learning disabilities.

By: Sara Elouadi, Review Staff

Many would say that senior year is big for everyone. This rings true for seniors Kobe Abbott and Sunny Fields. Both students have attended Rangeview all four years and are excited to graduate in 2018.

What makes senior year so special to them? Abbott and Fields have learning disabilities and have pushed themselves to reach the day that they receive their high school diplomas and walk out saying, “I’ve made it.”

According to Aurora Public Schools, there are 39,184 K-12 students in the district — 10% of those students are enrolled in special education programs. Of that 10%, seniors Abbott and Fields are two of the many students that fall under that category at Rangeview.

Abbott works hard on his test. He focuses on getting to graduation. (Sara Elouadi)

Found in the business department and next to the senior section in the commons are two classrooms that specialize in helping students with special needs.

Alicia Williams, an exceptional student service teacher, says, “I find it to be rewarding and very much a learning experience working with Kobe and Sunny. My favorite part is to see their faces when they accomplish an assignment.”

Although the classes are separate from the majority of students, kids with special needs have opportunities to thrive in smaller classrooms. A general special needs class has two teachers in order to give each student the individual attention they need to be able to prosper.

Abbott is an average teenager who dislikes school, claiming, “[It’s] okay, I guess. [There’s] no fun, just work. [I want to] jump around, throw a party.”

Abbott is quiet inside and outside of the classroom; during lunch, he wanders around on his own. Abbott keeps to himself most of the time and only really speaks when spoken to.

Although school for him is not the most pleasurable thing, his favorite part of the school day is science and math.

Kobe loves math, he enjoys working with numbers, said Mrs. Williams. “He’s always eager to work hard when it comes down to those two subjects. Besides that, he loves taking breaks and getting on the computers.”

Fields, on the other hand, enjoys school very much. As much as she’s excited to graduate, she’s not quite ready to leave.

“It would be sad to leave everybody; I’m not ready to let go,” Fields said.

Fields looks over her test answers. She hopes to graduate and study tech. (Sara Elouadi)

She absolutely loves and adores her teachers and peers. Her favorite part about her high school experience is the assemblies. Although Fields is quiet when you first meet her, she gets along with her classmates well and converses with them in and outside of class.

Outside of school, Abbott enjoys ninja activities, working on his science experiments/inventions, solving math problems, and watching his favorite TV shows: Johnny Test, Cow and Chicken, and Powerpuff Girls.

“I do anything,” he said.

Abbott is an open person who is curious about pretty much everything.

Fields enjoys binge watching horror movies when she’s not at school.

Fields said, “I love scary movies. Scary movies like Carrie.” She also enjoys cooking and sharing her cooking interests with her peers.

As high school comes to an end for them, they are encouraged to think about what they wish to do after they graduate — just like every high school student. Post-high school, Abbott’s plans are to work at Nickel-A-Play, as it is his favorite place to go. Fields wants to attend Crossroads and study tech.  

Teachers who work with students with special needs believe that they work hard to accomplish their dreams.

“I wish people with disabilities knew that they are individuals with differences; they might need extra help, but that it’s okay, that nobody is perfect, that they can perfectly fit in the society with perseverance, knowing that everyone is different,” Mrs. Williams said.

After four years of high school Abbott, Fields, and their peers feel as if they’re well on their way to do just that.

 

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