Mom Testifies For Son's Inclusion
By Dave Reynolds, Inclusion Daily Express
October 31, 2002
CHEAT LAKE, WEST VIRGINIA--A three-day due process hearing to determine where a 9-year-old boy will be schooled ended Thursday with the testimony of the boy's mother.
Debi Lewis testified that her son, Tucker, who has cerebral palsy and mental retardation, needs to attend Cheat Lake Elementary School with his siblings and peers from his community.
"We feel that it is crucial that Tucker be included, or integrated, with his peers," Lewis said.
But Monongalia County School district sends all children with similar disabilities to a "center-based" program at Mountainview Elementary School. District officials say Cheat Lake does not have what Tucker needs and that it would be too expensive to do so.
Lewis argued that that there were no "center-based" churches, "center-based" theaters or other "center-based" facilities in the community.
In the meantime, protesters from West Virginia ADAPT continued their vigil in support of Tucker, chained to a flag pole outside the school.
The Dominion Post ran the following stories:
October 30: "Mom Becomes Own Attorney In Son's Case Over School"
October 31: "Mom: Son Needs Peers From His Community"