EVANS, Ga (WJBF)

Brittany Lewis doesn’t just teach her students for a year and then they’re off to the next grade. Her special education class stays with her for the long haul of high school.

“Typically they come in when they’re 14-15 years old and they stay until they’re 22,” Lewis says. “So I get to keep them for a while.”
We stopped by her Evans High School classroom just before Christmas.
“We’ve been talking about traditions and different holidays. Today we were making a candle that they can take home to somebody special.”

There are no A’s and B’s in here. Report cards reflect a different kind of progress.
“They all have goals and objectives that we have to keep weekly data on and that’s how they pass and meet their goals.”
And before you know it, they leave Mrs. Lewis and head out into the real world.
“When they’re 22, they’re ready. Or else I haven’t done my job. Seeing them from when they first come in, to when they leave, it’s night and day.”
That’s where we come in. That’s where the entire community plays an important role.
“Once they’re out of high school there is no special ed. lifestyle. They have to follow the rules just like everybody else does. So, just treating them like anyone else.”

Mrs. Lewis does such a great job because she has such a strong support system. Her family made a very strong showing at our Golden Apple presentation. They are always there to lift her up, so she can concentrate on her students.

“I love these kids,” she says. “I love coming to work every day and watching them grow. When they do grasp a concept, it’s a celebration. It’s great.”