SWBOCES Student Shares Experiences as He Finishes Last Year of Special Education
As 22-year-old Christopher Thompson finishes the last year of special education, he shared some of his experiences and wisdom in a recent panel discussion during the Community Support Network’s 2022 ‘Virtual’ Transition Institute.
He was one of four self-advocates from New York in a Jan. 20 panel discussion led by Samuel Habib, a 22-year-old New Hampshire college student who is filming a documentary tentatively called the “Disability Road Map.” Samuel, who has cerebral palsy and a rare GNA01 neurodevelopmental disorder, showed a preview of the movie, in which he and his father document his life and advocacy journey. It includes interviews with disability advocates in which he asks important and probing questions about living independently, intimate relationships, finding support staff, and self-advocacy for inclusion and full adult lives.
After the film, Samuel posed similar questions to Chris, a student at SWBOCES’ Tappan Hill School; Claire Polin, a member of the Westchester Institute for Human Development’s Hear our Voices Team; Hannah Badain, who works for an advocacy organization in New York City; and Brendan Klein, who runs the self-advocacy organization at WIHD, which includes the Community Support Network. Samuel is a multi-media assistant and presenter at WIHD.