Save Methacton Best Buddies!
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Hi, my name is Tyler Katz and I am currently an officer of Methacton’s Best Buddies program. I am writing to you along with the other officers Lexi Gutowski, Maddy Yakscoe, Julie Byrne, and Gracie Silverstein. In the past year, our school district has started the downsizing process. We were recently notified that, in the upcoming school year, only school sponsored clubs will be allowed to continue running if issues with teacher contracts are not resolved. The Methacton Chapter of Best Buddies was started in the 2013-2014 school year by Amanda Shields. For two to three years, we have tried to be recognized by Methacton as a sponsored club, but never received sponsorship. Fortunately, we have been blessed with an amazing advisor Miss Jennifer Yocum, who has continued to volunteer her time and effort to help Best Buddies strive, without sponsorship (payment) from our school. With the upcoming changes, we requested sponsorship and received notice Friday, that we are amongst many other clubs that remain unsponsored. Best Buddies is a program that creates friendships between students with intellectual and developmental disabilities and typical peers. Through the peer buddy program, students are placed into one on one pairs to create ever-lasting friendships. Best Buddies has been life changing for everyone involved. Best Buddies is the ONLY Methacton club that incorporates students with intellectual and developmental disabilities with typical students, and to end this opportunity for everyone is so sad. It gives these students a chance to get out into the community and have a great high school social life, while at the same time encouraging regular academic students to accept and include everyone within the community. Our buddies that come out of this program have great every-lasting memories in addition to social skills they have learned along the way. The impact on them is truly unexplainable and remarkable. We understand that change is necessary in times like these, but Best Buddies is one of the largest student clubs at Methacton with over 90 members. Our Methacton chapter is especially something our district should be bragging about. For example, Miss Yocum won Advisor of the Year out of all the chapters in PA at the annual Buddy Ball. We have started a change.org petition and hope to get as many signatures as possible. A school board meeting will be held Tuesday, May 23rd at 7:00 pm. The officers and I will be attending and speaking and we hope to get the attendance of all club members and their families. We ask you to join us in our fight by helping us publicize this horrible wrongdoing and get our community involved.
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