Fati Fuchs and her husband are the proud parents of three children. Two of their children have special needs. Their daughter was diagnosed at age 3 with Autism, and their son was diagnosed with Down syndrome. This is their story.
Fati Fuchs remembers the day her daughter was diagnosed with Autism. At 3 years old, she was in need of ABA therapy. Thanks to the Ohio Autism Scholarship Program, her daughter now has the opportunity to live a happy, independent, and productive life.
“The Autism Scholarship has been critical to our daughter’s personal and academic success,” said Fuchs.
Unfortunately, the same opportunities presented by the Autism scholarship were not available to her son who was diagnosed with Down syndrome. Fati and her husband find that it is difficult to provide their son with the costly resources he needs to succeed. In addition, many private schools do not have the funding available to provide their son with the proper resources.
Thankfully for Fati and her husband, and other families in the same situation, all of that changed this year. The Jon Peterson Special Needs Scholarship Program was finalized on June 30, 2011, when Governor Kasich signed the new state budget.
Named for special education advocate and former Representative Jon Peterson, the program will build on the success of the state’s Autism Scholarship Program by providing scholarships to students with special needs who have an Individualized Education Program (IEP).
The program will give parents, like Fati and her husband, who have children with special needs, the opportunity to help their children succeed.
“This new Special Needs Scholarship Program will open up doors for our children, let us make the school choices and reduce the anxieties we feel as parents to find the best school to address the special needs and learning styles of our children,” said Fati.
Fati plans on applying for the scholarship program for their son as soon as the application window opens. She is grateful for all who worked hard to make this scholarship program possible.
“Our thank you to all,” said Fati, “especially to Representative Jon Peterson, for persevering and making this important program work for our children.”
Click here for more information on the Jon Peterson Special Needs Scholarship Program.