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The Devine Family

Teddy, now nine years old, was diagnosed with Development Delays and Nonverbal Autism two weeks before his second birthday. Teddy attended school at a local elementary school, where it soon became apparent that the setting was not meeting his needs. His parents, Erin and Eric Devine, had worked in the human services field for the past twenty years, and they knew their son wasn’t getting the support he needed.

Erin and Eric recall him not wanting to go to school – he would cry, resist getting dressed, and clearly communicate that he simply did not want to be there. He even had to wear a helmet due to certain behaviors. Steps to keep Teddy safe became stressful, and with his mounting anxiety, they knew it was time for a change.

After visiting several special education schools, both Erin and Eric fell in love with the KDC School. “The staff got to know Teddy and understand what he needs to be successful,” said Eric. “They are compassionate and enjoy being with him. The care goes above and beyond what I would expect from a typical school setting.”

Teddy progressively improved since starting at the KDC School. He has less anxiety and wants to interact with the other kids, something he never felt comfortable with before. He’s also graduated from using a helmet. “This program has just allowed our son to flourish,” said Eric

Not long after Teddy started at the KDC School, one of Erin’s co-workers asked how Teddy was doing. “You don’t look stressed when I ask you that anymore!” Erin’s co-worker observed. This is every caregiving parent’s most profound wish.

Now, when thinking about the future, Teddy’s parents would like him to stay with KDC as his skills and needs evolve, and for KDC staff to continue to advocate for him, just like they do.