This is the first time the club has hosted an author. The meeting begins at 9:45 a.m. in Triplett Hall.
Nancy P. Dixon of the Newcomers said, “We hope the community will come and support this event. Dr. Schulz is a wonderful speaker and her son, Billy, is also an inspirational speaker. He will share slides of his life and the audience will be amazed at their success story.”
“Grown Man Now” is the story about a mother’s journey with her son who was diagnosed with Down syndrome at 18 months of age. Fifty years later, this mother of four shares the powerful story of inspiration, courage and love that shaped the destiny of her family.
It was in the 1960s when Schulz was told her son Billy was not eligible to begin school until he was 8 since he had Down syndrome. Schulz said it made “no sense to me, so I decided to teach,” and was hired to teach kindergarten at a school which allowed Bill to come to work with her.
From that point, the perception of special needs children to be integrated into a conventional classroom became her mission. Schulz returned to school, earning her bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral degrees so she could work in the field of special education. During this time, she did intelligence assessments and research and organized special education programs.
Schulz is co-author of the book, “Mainstreaming Exceptional Students: A Guide for Classroom Teachers,” co-editor of “Bridging the Family-Professional Gap” and author of “Parents and Professionals in Special Education.” Her teaching continues to inspire and inform others who are taking a similar journey with a Down syndrome family member.
Billy became the first white student at Talbotton Road Junior High School in Columbus, Ga. Now at 50 years old, he can read and function in life situations and has developed social skills.
After her retirement from WCU, Schulz’s husband died and she and Billy, along with her mother, moved to Kingsport, to be closer to his sister Mary. He works at a food store there and is active in his church.
To view videos of the mother and her son, visit website: grownman.com. To learn more about books by Schulz, visit www.amazon.com/Grown-Man-Now-Jane-Schulz. Watch for weekly installments on her blog: grownmannow.blogspot.com.
You can help grow the Jane B. Schulz Scholarship Fund by contacting the development office at (838) 227-7124. The scholarship fund provides financial assistance to nontraditional students who express interest in majoring in special education.