SCSOS Spotlight

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Dulia Aguilar
 
“In my world there are no bad kids, just impressionable, conflicted young people wrestling with emotions and impulses, trying to communicate their feelings and needs the only way they know how.” Janet Lansbury
 
Dulia Aguilar is in her fifth year of serving SCSOS students as a Behavior Assistant. She services many schools: Yuba City High School, Sutter Union High School, Barry Elementary, Luther Elementary, Tierra Buena Elementary, Browns Elementary, Nuestro Elementary, Pleasant Grove Elementary and Franklin Elementary.
 
 So what does a Behavior Assistant do?
 Behavior Assistants work closely with the Behaviorist to develop and implement a behavior intervention/support plan for a student. These plans are designed to assist the classroom staff when dealing with difficult student behaviors. The plans try to address what the student is trying to communicate with the difficult behavior and how to address it in a positive manner. The behavior assistant is a support to the classroom staff by helping to implement the behavior plan. The student with a behavior intervention/support plan has support from the behavior assistant based on the number of minutes recorded in his or her IEP. Along with providing support for the behavior plan, Dulia also supports our Spanish-speaking families by translating for parent and IEP meetings.
 
Dulia was born and raised in the bay area. She and her husband moved here many years ago due to the high cost of housing in San Francisco. Dulia has worked in the mental health field before joining SCSOS as a Behavior Assistant. She served for many years as a Drug and Alcohol Prevention Specialist and as a Mental Health Rehabilitation Specialist for Victor Community Services.
Dulia enjoys spending time with her family. Her two children are involved in sports, acting and cheerleading. Dulia loves going to Broadway shows and movies with her family. She often returns to the bay area to visit family and friends.
 

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Julie Aguirre revised
 
Teacher Julie Aguirre often gets to see herself through her students’ eyes. Former students will return to visit her classroom and say things like, “You were right Miss Julie. It’s important to have a good work ethic.” This makes her proud because her students are productive citizens. Julie has been a special education teacher for severely disabled young adults for the past 31 years.
Julie began her teaching journey by earning her Bachelor’s degree in Speech Pathology. She was enrolled in the master’s program for Speech Pathology, beginning her clinicals, when she decided that she didn’t want to spend her life in this field. She saw an ad in the paper for a para professional for Virginia School in Wheatland; she was hired as a substitute para. The following school year, she was hired full time as a para for an MD class. She went back to school and completed both her multiple subject and special education credentials. In 1988, she began her teaching career at the high school SD classroom at Butte Vista. She was part of a team of three teachers who team taught. Butte Vista School then became a K-5 school and the high school age students were moved to a classroom on the Yuba City High School campus where Julie taught for 3 years. SCSOS decided in 1986 to develop a second Adult Transition Program for students who were not ready to access the Yuba College Transition Program. Julie accepted the challenge of developing this new program which was originally in a rental house across the street from YCHS on Park Avenue, hence the name Park Place. After two years at Park Place, Julie transferred to the Yuba College Adult Transition Program where she taught from 1998-2015.
In 2015, Julie returned to teach the SD class at Yuba City High School. “No day is the same. You learn to expect the unexpected,” Julie says. “My love for my students and seeing the changes in them has kept me going.”
Julie plans to retire at the end of the school year and spending more time with her mom and granddaughter is her highest priority. She also loves arts and crafts and plans to continue making crafts and selling them at craft fairs. She plans to travel, with a trip planned to Europe in August/September.
Julie has spent over three decades making a difference in the lives of severely disabled students. She will be greatly missed, but she plans to visit the classroom in order to keep up with her students.
“There is no greater reward than working from your heart and making a difference in the world” Carlos Santana
 
 
 
 
 

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Lisa and Alex

 

“To measure the success of our societies, we should examine how well those with different abilities, including persons with autism, are integrated as full and valued members” –Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon

Lisa Jimenez, an SCSOS Para educator for 15 years, says she has seen a lot of changes within special education during her tenure, particularly in the area of autism. When her son, Alex, was diagnosed with autism at the age of 3, there was very little known about it. Back then, some in the field believed that autistic children didn’t like to go outside, so recess was not an option for them during the school day. Alex, who is now 24, began his education with SCSOS in our preschool program. He continued his education through elementary, middle and high school; earning his high school diploma from Yuba City High School. Alex reported that he had two favorite teachers: LaVonne Jensen and Ernie Wilder. Currently, he works five days a week at Pride Industries and still receives respite support through Alta Regional once or twice per week.

 

Alex describes himself as hugely funny, shy and creative. He enjoys drawing, putting legos together and playing video games with his family. He was proud to say that he recently beat his dad at Pac Man.

 

Lisa is proud of the progress her son Alex has made. She is a mother of five boys and describes herself as dependable and hard working. She enjoys her work in the ASD Classroom #8 at Riverbend School. She especially enjoys watching the students grow and develop; she works diligently with each individual child to ensure that he or she receives what they need. Lisa reports that her colleagues are a great group of people. “Everyone is looking out for what is in the best interest of the student. If something isn’t working, then we look for other ways to help the student.”

 

Alex has grown into an independent, successful adult. Lisa credits early intervention and a strong educational system as key. “Alex’s success is what we strive to achieve with all of our ASD students,” Lisa said.

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Roberta Givens

 

“When teaching children with autism we must be quick to adapt, follow our instinct and go off plan Adele Devine

 

Passion, Persistence and Positivity: Words that describe Para-educator Roberta Givens. Roberta has served as a para-educator with SCSOS since 2015. She began her tenure at Yuba City High School in room 211 where she fell in love with the students. As of October 2019, she began serving ASD students at Riverbend in room 21. She reports that she didn’t know what to expect when she made the transition, but she loves her work with these students.

 

Roberta has lived in Olivehurst from the age of 6 except for a two-year stint at age 19 in Eureka where she served in the California Conservation Corp. She then moved back to Olivehurst to help her mother care for her niece. She was attending Yuba College when she found out she was pregnant with her son. After giving birth, she secured her Medical Assistant Certification through Cambridge and was employed at Sutter North OB. She began her Medical Assistant Instructor Training and withdrew when her son was diagnosed with autism. It was then that her new journey began; she provided early intervention for her son: speech, in-home ABA, and pre-school.  In 2010, she began serving as an In-Home ABA Provider. After a few years in this capacity, she decided that she wanted more time with the students that she served in this role.

 

Roberta began her tenure with SCSOS as a substitute para-educator in 2015 at Yuba City High School in room 211. “I fell in love with the students,” Roberta said. She worked in room 211 until October 2019 when she made the transition to the ASD classroom at Riverbend for grades 1-5. Her personal experience with autism gives her a broader perspective when working with our ASD students. She makes it her daily goal to discover what works for each individual child.

 

Roberta’s son is now 13 years old and thriving at school. Roberta credits advocating for her son and early intervention as key. She and her son enjoy participating in outdoor activities, Boy Scouts and road trips. Their most recent road trip was to Los Angeles and San Diego for seven days during winter break.

 

Passion, Persistence and Positivity: SCSOS is fortunate to have Roberta Givens as part of our educational team. Her years of personal and professional experience with autism make her an invaluable asset for our ASD students. “The work we do couldn’t happen without all the moving parts. What we do makes a difference for our students and families,” Roberta said.