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Faculty Spotlight - Heather Clink
It’s not uncommon for every swing to be taken on the playground at JB Lyndhurst. That’s why the addition of a new, indoor swing is such a blessing. The new therapy swing gives students a calming movement to support their sensory needs. Best of all, it was constructed by a “swing fairy” who works at Julie Billiart Schools.
“You just have to have a vision. If there’s a will, there’s a way,” said Heather Clink.
Clink is the Director of After Care at JB Lyndhurst. She is also the reason why many JB Lyndhurst students were thrilled to return from Thanksgiving break. “I told them we made a wish to the swing fairy!” Clink exclaimed. Clink and her husband, Jeremy, made the students’ wish for a swing come true.
While JB students enjoyed Thanksgiving break, Heather and Jeremy constructed a new swing for the students to use.
JB Occupational Therapist, Cathy Parrino, thinks it’s wonderful that students now have an indoor option during the winter months.
“Kids need that break. For most of our kids, it has a calming effect on them. It’s like rocking a baby. When they walk through and come down for occupational therapy, they see that we understand them. It makes them so happy.”
Some students seek movement to feed their vestibular sensory needs. Children can use the JB Therapy Gym’s scooters, trampoline, and balance beam to help with this. The addition of the new swing to the Therapy Gym now provides them with another option as well. Meeting the children’s vestibular need increases focus and attention in the classroom. It also helps children perform the skills needed throughout the school day, such as reading, handwriting, and overall coordination.
In reflecting on the impact the swing has made on the students, Clink said, “I can’t put a price on it, but to know that they have this throughout their day to help them is huge.”
Clink has worked at Julie Billiart Schools for nearly six years. She and Jeremy reside in Parma. They have four children – Connor, Nora, Emma, and Patrick. Their youngest son, Connor, is a seventh-grade student at JB Lyndhurst. When Clink is not spending time with her family or the kids of JB Lyndhurst, she is working on obtaining her Bachelor’s Degree in Psychology.
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BEYOND EDUCATION. BEYOND EXPECTATIONS.
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