The Moore Family

Jordan Center | Fall 2011 Spotlight |

The Moore family is musically inclined, and 6-year-old Caleb is no exception. His brother, Ari, taught him to play the drums when he was 3, and now Caleb is the sole drummer at the family’s church.

Caleb’s mother, LaShanda Brewington, enrolled him in More At Four (now the N.C. Pre-Kindergarten Program) at the Jordan Center to prepare him for kindergarten. But it wasn’t long before teachers picked up on something “different” about his behaviors. His attention span was shorter than that of his peers, and he didn’t make eye contact when he talked. When children invited him to play, he’d parrot their words—a condition called echolalia commonly linked to developmental delays. After a thorough evaluation, it was determined that Caleb is mildly autistic.

Brewington was dismayed by this development. She simply hadn’t seen it coming. But she listened carefully and followed through when teacher Laney Brown suggested she enroll Caleb in Wake County Preschool Special Education Services for the second half of the academic year. This way, the school system could identify Caleb’s needs and develop an Individualized Education Plan (IEP) based on his unique educational requirements. “Miss Laney went the extra mile, calling in experts to assess Caleb and make the pre-K placement for him. She also met with Caleb’s pre-K teacher and told her about Caleb’s love for music, tall buildings and other things so that these concepts could be built into his IEP,” Brewington says.

On Caleb’s first day of pre-K, Brown was there. “She took time out of her day to stay and play with him to make sure he was comfortable being there,” Brewington says.

This school year, Caleb is thriving in mainstream first grade—an easy transition that his mother credits to the Jordan Center. With much-improved social skills, he creates his own play activities and has stopped repeating the words and actions of other children. He is reading on grade level, making eye contact and will ask a question when he wants to know something.

“Few childcare centers really pay attention to kids’ special needs, but the Jordan Center is different,” Brewington says. “Caleb is doing well today because of Miss Laney and the staff there. When it comes to kids, they really know what they’re doing.”