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San Diego, TX: Elem school adds sensory room for 'student who hits himself a lot'

Feb 24, 2020, Alice (TX) News Journal: SDISD implements sensory room at elementary campus https://www.alicetx.com/news/20200224/sdisd-implements-sensory-room-at-elementary-campus
A sensory room was recently added to the Collins-Parr Elementary School in San Diego and on Friday, Feb. 21 the community was invited to attend an open house where they could explore the new edition. The room was made possible thanks to a $2 million Services to Students with Autism Grant obtained by Robstown Independent School District. The grant came through the Texas Education Association and would go towards the funding of the district’s sensory room. Robstown ISD decided to share the funds with other school districts including San Diego, Bishop, Agua Dulce, Aransas County, Aransas Pass, Ingleside, Sinton, Benavides and Port Aransas. Each district will get about $78,500 per year for the sensory rooms. “We were part of a 2-year grant with Robstown (ISD) and were able to set up the sensory room. What we’ve done with that money is to provide training for our teachers, we got equipment for our students and we were able to purchase the curriculum and Ipads for our kids as well,” said Rosie Solis, Director of Special Education at San Diego ISD…. … “We are working with students from pre-k to nine years old...It provides their body with the sensory input that they’re needing and it sends a signal to the brain and calms them down. A lot of times kids will have these behaviors that they are presenting in class. Like you’ll see a student who hits himself a lot, rocks in their chair, jumps up and down; the reason they’re presenting with those behaviors is because their body is needing that sensory input. So the function of the sensory room is to give them that input in a more appropriate way.” Just about anyone would benefit from a sensory room experience. The students at Collins-Parr Elementary who have been introduced to the room have been diagnosed with ADD/ADHD, sensory processing disorder, Autism, intellectual disabilities, oppositional defiance disorders, anxiety, developmental disorders, cerebral palsy and more…. The sensory room is only available to the elementary students at this time, but administration at SDISD is working on how to expand the room to the junior high and high school.