Yudith is a 7th grader at North Naples Middle School who attends Gargiulo Education Center every day after school. Yudith faces some learning challenges, and as a student needs Exceptional Student Education (ESE). This is provided for children with disabilities who need specially designed instruction. She also has a specially designed Individual Education Plan (IEP). Yudith works hard on her schoolwork and finds academic tasks quite challenging. Nonetheless, she arrives at the Gargiulo Education Center each and every day eager to progress. Because of her challenges, she works harder than a number of the other students to accomplish the same academic goals. 

Recently, it was brought to our attention that Yudith did not have internet at home, making it nearly impossible to complete any of her school assignments outside of the Center. With her special needs, it is difficult to always finish her schoolwork at the Center because she needs a little extra time. Her teacher here at the Center assisted with Yudith’s annual IEP meeting at her school and was able to communicate her dire need to have internet access while at home. We spoke with the school counselor and others at the school who had the ability to seek additional resources for students with great need. At first, we were told that although the Collier County School District provided internet in the past, they no longer offered that support. Determined and unwavering in our mission to help Yudith, the Center and her teachers persevered. Ultimately, it paid off when we were finally informed by the school that they were able to find grant money which could be utilized to provide Yudith with the internet service she desperately needs at home.

Since receiving her internet capability at home, Yudith’s grades have improved dramatically and Yudith has renewed confidence in herself. She is now reaching out for special assignments and is excited for what the future holds.