Special needs student celebrates at his own private high school graduation

Credit: Dana Jett/Special to The AJC

Credit: Dana Jett/Special to The AJC

Spalding High School student Jordan Smith wasn’t going to be able to go through a graduation ceremony with his classmates.

Smith has autism and sensory issues with loud noises and crowds, and he constantly needs to move and walk, his teacher, Dana Jett, told The Atlanta Journal-Constitution on Thursday.

Smith’s family felt skipping the ceremony was in his best interest.

But Jett had a solution: “I brought the graduation to him.”

On Tuesday morning, Jett and others held a private ceremony outdoors for Smith’s family and friends. A recording of the event made its way onto YouTube.

“I felt he was worthy of recognition,” Jett said. “His family deserves to know we appreciate his accomplishments.”

Everything fell into place. Jett wanted to surprise Jordan’s mother, who is a teacher at the school. Even the weather, which was drizzling that morning, turned favorable for the event.

“We pulled it off,” Jett said, “with the help of the Lord.”

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