School group helps students with disabilities

Imagine being in the halls of White Pines Middle School in Grand Haven and you see a student with a disability being bullied by another student. What would you do? "We'll help them or take them aside, and ask if they're OK,' said Michala Ringquist, a White Pines seventh-grader and a member of Power of Peer Support. "Or, if we're not comfortable with that, we'll go to a teacher.'
Jordan Travis
Apr 21, 2011

The student organization was founded by Deb Stanley, a sixth-grade special education teacher at White Pines. Stanley and four others head the group, which serves as a support network for students with disabilities, she said.

Ringquist was describing what “P.O.P.S. Cops” do to intervene when they see students with disabilities being harassed by other kids. It is one of many ways the group works to help these students who may not know how to help themselves.

April is National Autism Awareness Month, and students in the support group recognized this by having their own autism awareness day, said Shayna Wierenga, a member of the group. Members gave presentations in seventh-grade social studies classes meant to simulate the sensory experience of people with autism, she said.

To read more of this story, see today’s print edition of the Grand Haven Tribune.

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