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Teacher Honored for Helping Students with Cerebral Palsy

By Angie Haflich


A local fourth-grade teacher has made the list of the top five “Favorite Cerebral Palsy Teachers,” in the nation after being nominated by a parent whose daughter is in her classroom.

“One of my students, her mother nominated me on the Cerebral Palsy website,” Ginny Ortiz, fourth-grade teacher at Georgia Matthews Elementary School, said. “She tried to keep it a secret, but they had to contact me for more information, so then she emailed me one day to let me know that she did it.”

Alicia Ramirez’s daughter, Bailey Ramirez, 9, who has cerebral palsy, is in Ortiz’s class. Ramirez said she has noticed her daughter’s progress since the beginning of the school year.

“Bailey seems to put a lot more effort into her school work and into her physical abilities, her walking, and doing more things for herself and not relying on others so much,” Ramirez said. “It’s something we’ve worked on in the past with her, but Mrs. Ortiz really pushes Bailey, and not just on a school work level, but also to do her best at absolutely everything.

“Mrs. Ortiz has really worked with motivating her and stressing to Bailey that cerebral palsy is not something that she should see as an obstacle, but more like something, where if she works hard, she can overcome things that stand in her way.”

Bailey said Ortiz has made a big difference in her life.

“I think she has really helped me learn new things that I never learned before,” the youngster said.

Ramirez entered Ortiz into the Cerebral Palsy Family Network’s “Our Favorite Teacher” contest, in which 50 teachers from across the nation were nominated for their work with students with cerebral palsy. After viewing each nominee’s short profile, people voted for their favorite. After receiving 944 votes, Ortiz placed third among the 50 other teachers. “I was thrilled to see she had even placed,” Ramirez said. “She told me even just being entered into the contest meant a lot to her, and I’m just thrilled that she placed so well in a national contest.”

She and Ortiz encouraged friends and families to vote, but Ramirez said when she went onto CP Family Network’s website, she noticed people from all over the country voting for Ortiz.

Read the full story.

 

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