Special Needs

He Didn’t Think He’d Graduate, But His Special Ed Teacher Proved Him Wrong

student

Now that the school year is winding down, there are a lot of graduations, last minute assignments, and award ceremonies. But for one student, this school year ended in a particularly emotional moment that took the internet by storm.

19-year-old Jamias Howard was surprised by his special education teacher Kimberly Wimbish with his graduation cap and gown at Griffin High School in Georgia. The moment was captured in a Facebook video, which not surprisingly, has gone viral. Jamais took the cap and gown, telling Wimbish:

“Appreciate it, ma’am. I love you so much. Thank you so much for everything you do for me. Appreciate it.”

Jamias was so excited and proud that he called his mom, Trenia Howard, while she was at work–his mom recalled he said:

“‘Mama you need to get home. You need to come home right now. I’m graduating.’ My eyes starting getting teary when I heard that.”

Wimbish described how this was big moment for Jamias, telling ABC News:

“Jamias has had his challenges. He had additional challenges that wouldn’t afford him the opportunity to come to school to be educated. I saw need, and I was able to fulfill that need. I had no problems volunteering to try to help him graduate.

We’d meet at the local library or a local park or Burger King, wherever he could walk to. We’d go through lessons and I’d grade him and I’d teach him. He really worked. When I found out he had enough credits, I was just about to explode with excitement.”

She went on to say how he was used to not trusting others:

“It was like he didn’t trust anyone and he had up a wall… It looked like he was never going to graduate, like he wasn’t going to be able to pull it together. 

He put in his time, and he worked, and I worked, and Lord knows it was a challenge, but it was well worth it.”

His mom agreed that Wimbish was able to get past his barriers through hard work, “He’s the tough guy, but she got in there like the tough mom. She did not play with him. I respect her and owe her my gratitude for the rest of my life.”

Wimbish’s hard work didn’t stop there, though as she set up a GoFundMe page to help Jamias raise money to attend technical school. Watch the Facebook video below to see the emotional moment:

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