A 10-year-old girl named Ryan Neighbors has spina bifida, a terrible condition that keeps her confined to a wheelchair. Recently, her school planned a field trip to the Falls of The Ohio, which would have students hiking along a rough trail.
The school had so often before given a lot of consideration to the fourth-grader in their scheduling of outings. But this one… it was definitely not the type of thing young Ryan could do.
Her mom, Shelly, however, just decided to take her daughter to a museum instead that day, so her classmates could enjoy their fun activity. But Ryan wanted to be with her classmates on that hiking trail. That was a real problem until a male teacher approached Shelly and told her that he would be happy to carry her daughter during the field trip. That teacher was Jim Freeman, who teaches 4th grade next door to Ryan’s own class. Shelly was shocked by his kindness to do this.
Says Shelly: “He was like ‘Hey, I’ll carry her, no big deal… He was so pure-hearted that he wanted to make sure that she was included and not left out and she got to feel like one of her peers.”
Once again, she thought, the people at her daughter’s school were going out of their way to include Ryan in things and allow her to participate just like the other kids. So, with the help of a backpack carrier, Jim toted Ryan all the way along the trail, giving her the opportunity to enjoy all the things her classmates were enjoying.
And Ryan was really excited about the venture, saying: “When I got to see the fossils and stuff, I was like, wow, that’s like really cool! I haven’t gotten to see that before.”
For Jim, he was just doing his job. Says Jim: “This is just one physical act that you can see, but we do this countless times throughout the school day and throughout the year.”
Sounds like this is one group of teachers that parents and students can really count on.
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