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Her Teen Son With Down Syndrome Was Denied The Ability To Play In His High School Marching Band, So This Dedicated Mom Took Action To Change That

Last month, mother Kristie VanZant was forced to turn to Change.org as a last resort in order to make her teenage son Jakobie Richardson’s dream of playing in his school band a reality. 

Jakobie was diagnosed with Down syndrome but has always expressed a love for music– particularly percussion instruments.

So, a few years ago, Kristie began pleading with the Klein School District in Texas to allow her son to participate in the school marching band.

“He loved watching [the band] over the years through his older brother playing football for the district. Jakobie studied the band and soaked up the routine like a sponge– spending his days at home practicing the routine and the music,” Kristie recalled.

But, even after she sent videos of Jakobie performing the routine to Klein High School’s ARD department, his participation in the band was denied.

At first, Kristie was told that no students who could not read music were allowed in the program.

“But, the videos showed that through Jakobie observing and mimicking the routine, he could, in fact, be successful in the program,” she said.

In turn, the high school’s band teacher did eventually allow Jakobie’s entry into the program. However, he was only to participate at the most basic level.

Change.org; pictured above is Jakobie

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