A Special Group of Amazingness


Photo By: Victoria Phipps

When walking through campus, you can’t pass this group of students without smiling, with their energetic attitudes and simple excitement to just be at school.

The special education program consists of a group of amazingly creative students, all holding very unique personalities.

Mrs. Lindsey Mangini, one of the special education teachers, never thought that she would grow up to be working in such a remarkable field of students.

“In high school, I was just an average student. I didn’t excel academically in one particular area,” Mangini said. “I began volunteering with adults with disabilities and it was always so fun to just talk and communicate with them.”

As many would expect, there is never a boring day when you’re surrounded by these students. They’re constantly occupied with core classes, as well as participating in different extracurricular activities such dance, choir, art and auto mechanics.

“We always see what their interests are in order to put them in their classes,” Mangini said. “We make sure to expose them to the opportunities everyone else has.”

Senior Jordan Rowan enjoys playing basketball at school and with neighborhood friends on his free time. Coming to school is something Jordan looks forward to everyday.

“Basketball is my favorite sport because I can play it inside,” Jordan said. “But my favorite thing about coming to school is getting to see all my friends.”

Senior Alyssa Morales looks forward to school because of her teachers and getting to see them. Her favorite subjects are math and reading but science is where her interest is.

“Science is my favorite because it’s all about the planets,” Morales said. “I love learning more things about the Earth.”

To keep such a fast pace group such as the special education program running smooth, standards must be set. Mangini must give thought to her students future and their lives after high school, making sure everyone is mindful of the opportunities offered.

“I hope when students leave high school, they get involved with their community,” Mangini said. “Unfortunately, a lot of people with disabilities and their parents are not aware of outside of school services that could help them get jobs or participate in activities.”

The special education program has had such a visible impact on Judson, from the positivity the students and teachers radiate to the events they hold, where all our students can come together and engage.

“The biggest thing is that these students are not all that different from the rest of y’all,” Mangini said.