A show to watch: Best Kept Secret

I did not catch all of this episode, but this looks like a fantastic documentary about autism and the families and school workers who navigate the transitions as children age out of the public school system.

The web site is here. It looks like you can stream the episode if your public television station does not show it.

Here is the description of the show:

At a public school in Newark, N.J., the staff answers the phone by saying, “You’ve reached John F. Kennedy High School, Newark’s best-kept secret.” JFK provides an exceptional environment for students with special-education needs. In Best Kept Secret, Janet Mino, who has taught a class of young men for four years, is on an urgent mission. She races against the clock as graduation approaches for her severely autistic minority students. Once they graduate and leave the security of this nurturing place, their options for living independently will be few. Mino must help them find the means to support themselves before they “age out” of the system.

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3 thoughts on “A show to watch: Best Kept Secret

  1. I found this show very interesting. It showed a poor school in New Jersey and the students in what appeared to be a very isolated class. The poor teacher did her best to help these students but most were unable to find work, and people in general in work situations are not going to welcome autistic students. My son had a job coach and they tried everything. The only fit seemed to be the library, but no one would hire him, and were not welcoming to him as even a volunteer. He is very verbal with fairly good people skills, so we now are considering volunteer work. As a parent, you want reliable transportation, safety on the job – this is a big one, and for your child to like the job. I don’t see it happenind but praying every day for change. Also, at the end of the show, the producer said that this was like any other transition, like if your child was going off to college, even to a really nice college. She has to be kidding, I guess that gives her view as a non-special needs parent. I would like to see another episode in a up-scale school and what happens to their kids. Let me know your opinion because this made me feel even worse about finding a job for my son.

    1. My son is 9, so I am not feeling those things so closely. I thought the teacher in the piece was a saint. I share her hope that our golden will be able to find a life that is meaningful for them.

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