Knights of Columbus donate to Hunter Elementary special education program
Published 9:15 am Tuesday, April 26, 2016
Some students in the Comprehensive Development Classroom (CDC) at Hunter Elementary will soon get the chance to try a new way of learning.
On Monday morning, members of the Knights of Columbus from St. Elizabeth Catholic Church here in Elizabethton made a donation of $751 to the special education program at Hunter Elementary.
Rebekah Grindstaff, who teaches the CDC program for grades K-3 at the school, said the money will go toward purchasing balancing ball chairs for the students. These special chairs mesh a traditional chair with a balancing ball.
“It helps the children focus on the lesson and still wiggle around some at the same time,” Grindstaff said. Some special needs students have lots of energy and often feel the need to be constantly moving in some way, she said. These chairs will allow those students to expend some of that energy by moving while still allowing them to be seated and focusing on their lesson.
The balancing ball chairs have been shown to assist the students in a variety of different ways, Grindstaff said.
“The students have shown improvement with behavior, test scores and on-task learning time,” she said.
Currently, Grindstaff said the CDC program does not have any of the balancing ball chairs, but the donation on Monday by the Knights of Columbus will allow the school to purchase nine of the special seats.
“That will be enough for almost each of my students,” Grindstaff said. “The goal is for every child to have the opportunity to use them at some point in the day.”
The Knights of Columbus from St. Elizabeth Catholic Church frequently make donations to assist the special education programs in both the county and city school systems. The group holds fundraisers and then distributes the money raised to assist the education programs.
“This is money we’ve raised by giving out the Tootsie Rolls at Walmart,” said Deputy Grand Knight Jimmy Townsend, with the St. Elizabeth Knights of Columbus. “We want to thank Walmart and all the people who supported us.”