Students with disabilities are being helped to move around more easily, thanks to a motorized car designed and built specially for them.
Some of our youngest students at Charles Barrett Elementary School, Jefferson-Houston PreK-8 IB School, and the Early Childhood Center were provided with the opportunity to receive a motorized car through the Go Baby Go program at Marymount University, with support from Alexandria community member Jen Walker.
Recipients of the cars are students with limited mobility, and each student receives a personalized car that has been modified to meet individual needs. Teams from Marymount University, American Physical Therapy Association (APTA), ACPS and the community worked to build each car, which will provide the students with opportunities to better access their communities.
Teams worked in the Go Baby Go Garage at Marymount University’s Physical Therapy department. Stations were set up around the garage, and each station was home to a pit crew team, which worked to rewire cars and add modified steering and remote control systems, build the car, and add modifications as needed to provide students with additional supports and safety features, such as seat belts and headrests. Pictures of each student adorned the stations, providing a powerful reminder of who would be receiving the cars.
Jane Richardson, ACPS Early Childhood Special Education Coordinator, worked closely with Marymount University’s Physical Therapy Department Chair Skye Donovan to make this dream become a reality for our students.
To know that our students who have challenges getting around their schools and neighborhoods will now be able to navigate more easily with the motorized car is such a thrill. I appreciate the ACPS team of teachers, physical therapists, administrators and Jen Walker for helping make this event a success.”
Melissa Poggio, Special Education Teacher at Charles Barrett Elementary School, said seeing so many people come together for students was an inspirational experience.
I’m looking forward to seeing all of the opportunities that the Go Baby Go cars will provide for our students,” Poggio said.