SSD Ladue Schools

April 2022

Paraprofessional Appreciation Day 4/6/2022

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April 6, 2022 is Para Appreciation Day. Paras are an integral part of the special education program at Ladue Schools. All our paras are dedicated individuals who work hard every day to support students in achieving success. Pictured above are the three paras who work at Ladue’s Fifth Grade Center (pictured from left to right: Tyler Barton, Stacie Grant, and Robin Hankin). Paras are being shown appreciation with a gift bag of snacks for them to enjoy. If you know a para, please take the time to tell them how much you appreciate them. You can find their email addresses on each schools website under "staff." They would love to hear from you!

Key to The Classroom Award Winner

One of SSD’s greatest strengths is its teachers. With 41 teachers and SLP's in Ladue Schools working with students and families every day, they are a highly skilled and devoted group of educators.

We want to congratulate, Katie Reeves, Special Education Teacher at Ladue Horton Watkins High School, for receiving the Key to the Classroom Award! The Key to the Classroom Award recognizes the achievements of SSD classroom teachers who have demonstrated exceptional skill, dedication, and learning success with students.

Katie will be honored at the district’s 2022 Salute to SSD celebration on May 12, 2022. Please, join us in congratulating her on this accomplishment.

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During stressful times, it is extremely important for us to take care of ourselves. Deep breathing can be a wonderful method to enhance our physical, mental, and emotional well-being. The added bonus is that deep breathing can be performed practically anywhere at any time without the need for any special materials or equipment. If you’d like to reduce stress and anxiety, improve your sleep, and improve your cognitive focus, you may want to practice these three simple breathing techniques:

Belly Breathing:

While sitting, with one hand on the chest and the other on the belly, take a deep breath in through the nose, ensuring the diaphragm (not the chest) inflates with enough air to create a stretch in the lungs. Exhale slowly through pursed lips. Initially repeat 3 times. You can work up to 6-10 deep, slow breaths per minute for 2-3 minutes.

Box Breathing:

This exercise involves breathing in through the nose for a count of four, holding the breath for a count of four, breathing out slowly for a count of four, and then holding for another count of four, essentially making a “square” or “box” with the breath.

4-7-8 Breathing:

This technique involves breathing in through the nose for a count of four, holding the breath for a count of seven, and exhaling through the lips for a count of eight.

While we often take breathing for granted, it’s important to take the time to appreciate every inhale and exhale we take. Slowing our breath is a way to slow down the world around us and improve our physical health as well as our mental health. So, breathe deep…the power to change your life is already inside you!

Kelly Education

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Parent Education and Diversity Awareness (PEDA) Information

Understanding the Autism Spectrum Disorders: Two Part Class with Dr. John Bruno Autism Effective Practice Specialist April 14th and 21st 6-8pm

Identify and understand the characteristics of Autism Spectrum Disorders and learn effective, practical strategies that will support your child in being more successful at home and school.

The second session will focus more on strategies, with time for discussion and questions.

Click the following link to register for this event:

Congratulations to our Spring 21-22 Parent Leadership Institute (PLI) graduates!!! If you are interested in participating in a future PLI email us at

PEDA would love your feedback!

Please complete are PEDA Communications survey here: PEDA Survey

Lunch & Learn with SSD

Special School District’s Family and Community Outreach, Social Work, Communications, and Parent Education and Diversity Awareness (PEDA) departments have teamed up to offer a virtual Lunch & Learn series for SSD families and stakeholders. The series, which will involve community organizations sharing information about their work, will take place on the first Wednesday of each month during the 2021-22 school year, from 11:30 AM - Noon.

Representatives from nine community organizations will participate in order to increase awareness about their agency and make connections with those in our SSD community who may benefit from their programs and services.

Organizations represented in the Lunch & Learn series include:

Stay Connected with Special School District Find us on Social Media

Special School District recognizes the value and increasing role of online social media in an education realm. To increase our communication efforts, we have accounts on four social media sites:


We would like to cover topics of interest to you in the monthly newsletter. Please, share your feedback and what you would like to see covered in the newsletter by clicking this link: Ladue Newsletter Feedback