This month’s post is written by Troy Bruner. Troy is a teacher at Chaddock’s Special Education School. Outside of the classroom, Troy enjoys jogging, absorbing as much sports as possible, and occasional Netflix binges!
The first encounter I had with Chaddock was in the winter of 2016 via a “youth worker” job post on Indeed. Since my senior year of high school, I knew that I wanted to work with children in some capacity. During this journey, I took classes in elementary/secondary education, sociology, youth ministry, but ultimately ended up pursuing a degree in special education. My reason for this choice was primarily due to a job experience I had as a para-professional in a middle school behavioral classroom.
Jumping back to my initial encounter with the Chaddock organization, I proceeded to click on the job link, and was taken to their website, where I fell in love with their treatment model and the variety of services provided to the students on their campus. They had me sold. I knew in my heart it was an employer where I would be a great fit and also where God could use me to make an impact.
The call came and an interview was set up for January of 2017. As I walked into the friendly confines of Osborne building, I was greeted by both the human resources department and the photos on the wall displaying positive interactions between students and staff. While I had applied for the youth worker position, the agency had seen my special education degree, and proceeded to offer me a newly opened teaching position at the school. This was my introduction to the opportunistic nature of the Chaddock organization that allows employees to advance themselves or pursue a role in a different department within the agency.
The motto of Chaddock is “every child deserves a chance” and upon being escorted by administration down the halls to the first classroom I would be observing in, I could see this motto was being implemented school-wide. A high teacher to student ratio allowed for the children’s individualized needs to be met and it also allowed for the adult to get to know them on a personal level. I witnessed therapeutic walks being used for students who needed to talk about overwhelming life events and various other relationship building activities.
While our official titles are “special education teachers,” on a daily basis we also get the opportunity to serve as counselors and mentors. Now six and a half years into my career at Chaddock, this cumulation of aspects is why I love my job so much. We truly are a child focused organization…one like I’ve never ever been a part of before and one that I never want to leave.
It really doesn’t matter what your role is at Chaddock, in some way or other what you do touches the children and families we serve, and often, your role (while identified in your job description) can provide you with opportunities to bring your additional strengths to the job, if you choose to take them.
What is so wonderful about this is that we can model for our children that they don’t have to be, or feel, limited in their lives. There is always opportunity to reach for something new, discover new abilities or use their strengths in diverse ways.