In March of 2004, we incorporated Texas’ Special Kids and began a journey of service to families with children who have special needs. Many, though not all, of the families we have served were homeschoolers. We have traveled extensively throughout Texas and into other states as well, carrying a message of hope to those who, like us, are raising children who are anything but typical.
It was our sincere hope that, over time, this work would come to support our family in such a way that we would be able to leave our jobs and devote all our time to helping families. Instead, we have reached a point where Doug is working a full-time job plus a part-time one, while Patsy homeschools our children and teaches four classes at the university, which is considered by them to be 80% of a full-time position. We are working this hard just to support our family and keep our noses above water. In the meantime, we have less and less time for working on TSK. The travels we have done in the past depended on the limited amount of fundraising we were able to do, but now we do not have time for even that little amount of working to raise those funds.
So, we are stopping. Being still. Ceasing to strive. Not fighting any longer. It. Is. Finished.
We hope that, in the future, we will be able to repackage this work and make it profitable for our family so that we can work harder at helping families and less at working our other jobs.
In the meantime, we know that there are still many questions in the minds of families. Several years ago, we wrote a book — Called Parenting: Creative Interventions in Special Needs Homeschooling. The name is really a bit of a misnomer. Although it says “Homeschooling,” the information contained therein very well could be used by families whose children are schooled in other settings. Here are some practical uses for the book besides homeschooling:
* Homework environments and strategies
* Classroom ideas that can be taken to IEP meetings as suggestions for teachers
* How to get everything else done in life — organizing the home and schedule, meal preparation, laundry tips, etc.
* Encouragement for parents
* Why churches need to have a special-needs ministry.
One of our goals is to rewrite the book in such a way that it can be useful to a broader audience. Nonetheless, in its current form it is still useful…if you ignore the title!
Check out our storefront on Lulu at http://stores.lulu.com/txspecialkids
For now, this is the only way you can access the book. As we work toward our repackaging goals, we are going to look for a new publisher. When that happens, we will announce it here.
Thank you for understanding why we must take this step. Our desire has always been to help families, but for now, we must take care of our own.
Doug and Patsy Arnold