Yes I Can!
What is Yes I Can?
Yes I Can is a full year, elective course. Through classroom discussion, experiential learning, setting of common goals, and identification and minimization of barriers, students in the Yes I Can program plan and participate in social and recreational activities at school and in their community.
In the Yes I Can program, students learn about how all people are alike, they learn to dispel myths and misconceptions of those with disabilities, they begin to understand quality of life issues, and they plant their feet firmly on the road to self advocacy. Most importantly, lifetime friendships are forged, opening wide the social circles of all students involved.
How does Yes I Can benefit students?
Aside from the increased relationship networks, outcomes for students with disabilities include: increased achievement of IEP goals, greater access to general education curriculum, enhanced skill acquisition, increased inclusion in future environments, higher expectations, increased school staff collaboration, increased parent participation, and integration into the community.
General education role models benefit greatly as well including: leadership achievement, the building of meaningful friendships, an increased appreciation and acceptance of individual differences, an increased understanding and acceptance of diversity, and respect for all people. Studies have show that general education students who participate in social inclusion programs have increased academic progress and decreased discipline and behavioral challenges.
Through Yes I Can all students are prepared for an adult life in an inclusive society by opening social networks and reframing stereotypes and myths associated with the disabled population.
ARE YOU A “YES I CAN” STUDENT?
- Do you want to help others?
- Are you kind and responsible?
- Do you have a positive attitude?
- Do you want to learn leadership skills?
If so, you may make an excellent Yes I Can student. Note: Yes I Can will take the place of your current elective if you are admitted to the class.
Yes I Can Criteria and Responsibilities:
- Once in the program, students must maintain good citizenship.
- Students must consistently show respect, encouragement, and kindness towards peers and staff.
- Students must work cooperatively with others and complete Yes I Can assignments.
- Yes I Can participates in school-wide events (e.g., winter carnival, Boo Grams, Kiss the Pig, Penny Wars), and students will be required to assist with these events.