Willie Lee

When Lee came to Kohler with his mother for a tour, it was clear that all he needed was the right environment in which to thrive. As Lee started at The Arc Kohler School he was having a hard time handling his emotions, behaviors, and staying on task. Immediately, Lee had a team of people including a special education teacher, occupational therapist, physical therapist, speech therapist, and a behavior specialist rally around him to develop an individualized plan and goals for him to be successful. They were all determined to not only make his transition as smooth as possible, but to help him feel comfortable and safe in school.

In the beginning, he was having difficulty attending to daily school activities, participating in therapy sessions, and even just staying in his seat. However, with the help of his therapists and 1:1, he can now sit and work with an activity for at least 15 minutes and is demonstrating a clear understanding of the various pieces of information his teacher provides him with. Lee is also making great strides in following directions, communicating his requests through either pointing and/or gestures, and regulating his emotions with greater success.

Ever since Willie Lee has started school here at Kohler, his mother has seen a great deal of improvement in his independence and functional communication. Overall, though, she says, “He is a happier child. He has a desire to learn to do more things on his own and is better at communicating his wants and needs. It’s so amazing to me how much progress he has made in such a short period of time.” She attributes his success to the highly individualized and nurturing environment at Kohler School. Kohler staff feels equally excited about him coming to the school, stating that he is, “a beautiful, unique child who wants to explore his world, has lovely eye contact, and a love for sensory input.”

Lee’s father was so moved by the constant communication between school and home in addition to the compassion from staff that he wrote to Lee’s teacher, “I have been reading Lee’s daily notebook and I must say, I am very overwhelmed by how much you care about my son, from you to the whole school. It brings warmth to my heart because I can feel the love when I read his daily notes…Thank you for everything you are doing for my son; words cannot describe how I feel.”

His mother was so excited to share her son’s progress with others so that parents like her who felt unsure about where to send their child to school would feel excited, supported and comfortable choosing Kohler. She and all who know him are looking forward to all the wonderful things that he can and will achieve.


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