‘Best Buddies makes Rock Island High School More Inclusive’
Rock Island High School featured on WQAD
Students with intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDD) often enter the same building and walk the same hallways as their peers, but they are left out of social activities. These students miss out on so many key elements of the school experience such as finding friends to sit with at lunch, attending homecoming or prom, joining a club or meeting a friend with whom to share their experiences.
Best Buddies offers students with IDD the chance to have a friend and to share interests, experiences and activities that so many other students their age enjoy. Not only does Best Buddies create lasting friendships, but they also help facilitate an environment of inclusion throughout the school and in the community.
Liam Haskill, 17, started the Best Buddies chapter at Rock Island High School at the beginning of the school year, to pair students with disabilities up with a peer buddy and create a more integrated high school.
“I just want Rocky to have a more inclusive environment for our special education program, so I’m so happy to see a lot of people already be interested and being a part of it,” the high school senior said.