This is beautiful story shared by David and Jana Crowder in support for Mr Franklin Burns for the QuickSchools Teacher of the Year award. Vote for Franklin Burns here.
Our son was diagnosed at age 4 with Autism in Tennessee, he‘s now 7 yrs old. My husband and I actually moved from Tennessee to Texas in May 2010 to find our son a better education. We moved into Cy-Fair school district and found that they were simply not set up for our Autistic child with Aspergers.
Our son is in second grade and could not read, knew less then five sight words and was scared to go to school. He could not function in a regular classroom, and was overwhelmed by the many students and the daily changes in the public school. The gym echoed, and the lunchroom hurt his ears. He was bullied.
He has anxiety, difficulty in verbal and emotional expression/ communication, as well as sensory integration disorder. I was being called daily to pick him up at public school due to his meltdowns. I was told that he probably would never learn to read or write.
As a parent with Autism, I knew my son could do more if only he was given a chance.
Since entering St. Towers Academy in Cypress, Texas at the beginning of January 2011, our son has made leaps and bounds. Within the few months he has been there (3 months) he is reading on grade level and doing great. He has not been restraint, and he says, “That is his favorite thing about his new school.” He is very excited about going to school now and loves to learn. The one thing as parents that was most difficult for us was the back and fourth communication we did not have with our son. He was not very responsive and could not hold a conversation. He hated to be asked questions. Now, we are shocked because now our son asks questions. He will say things now like, “so mom, how was your day playing tennis?”
Mr. Franklin Burns, the Director/ Teacher is an exceptional teacher who has a unique way of teaching those with special needs. He has such an Impression on his students. He “gets it “when it comes to our son. He had the keys to unlocking the doors that kept our child from learning and for Autistic children… that is a rare gem. I believe that with our son, the biggest part that Mr. Burns played in his education was allowing our child time and space and building much trust in their relationship. There is also visual learning, laptops, small group, one on one learning, and many fun educational fieldtrips. It is a very fun loving atmosphere.
For our son, writing is very hard for him, but with Mr. Burns and his staff, they focus on our son’s strengths and not his weakness. This thought process has not only built up our son’s confidence but his self-esteem as well, and to the point that he is not afraid to try new things now, this is a very important roll in ones life and a huge accomplishment for our son. Still our son likes Blue, but as far as changes go, he has more adaptability to change without meltdowns.
We had looked into many private schools around Houston, but they just did not seem like a good fit for our son. Finding St. Towers Academy was a Godsend to our family, not only have they made extraordinary progress with our son, they have given us (parents) much support on the home front and have provide our son a stability educational opportunity.
St. Towers Academy truly understands and validates our parental concerns and input into our child’s education welfare.
St. Towers Academy has been everything we wanted and excels in our expectations—an excellent education in small classes, individual attention to our son’s needs, opportunities to try new things in a safe, calm environment, and a community of parents who believe in the school’s mission
David and Jana Crowder