Re “Voice of ‘silent prison,’” Dec. 22
Thank you for the wonderful article about a wonderful young man. Ido Kedar’s life with autism reminds me so much of the struggles we faced when trying to obtain services through our school district for our daughter.
Had we listened to the team of teachers and specialists rather than our own common sense, my daughter would likely now not be graduating with a degree from a four-year college and holding down two jobs and an internship. She is currently applying to top-ranked graduate schools.
My daughter says she will never forget that one of her high school teachers told her that she would never make it in a four-year college.
Parents of special-needs children need to advocate for their sons and daughters and use professional advocates when necessary. We must fight for them so they will learn to fight for themselves. And they will.
The case of Kedar, the autistic teen who communicates by using an iPad or letter board, should serve as a wake-up call to special educators.
Nonverbal people with autism have been typing to communicate for more than 20 years, yet many educators seem not to be aware.
When CNN produced the Academy Award-nominated documentary “Autism is a World” in 2004 about my daughter Sue Rubin, a nonverbal person with autism — who has since graduated from Whittier College — a small segment of the educational community embraced the realization that these people were intelligent. But most educators still refuse to acknowledge they could have been wrong.
Most autistic children sit in preschool classes for years. It is time to change this and give them the education that is their right.