PRST STD U.S. POSTAGE PAID CANTON, MS PERMIT NO. 3 Canton News P.O. Box 1163, Canton, MS 39046 Good News You Can Us e • Augus t 6 , 2020 • Vo l . 6 , No . 8 • Cant on , Mi s s i s s i pp i SON Valley ministers to special needs CPSD plans to begin the school year with Virtual Learning By Lori Lycette SON Valley is a private non-profit Christian organization that ministers to the needs of adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities. In 1998, a group of families wanted an alternative to a state institution for their children, so they began meeting with a clear goal, but was difficult to figure out financially. Bill McCormack also had an in- terest in starting a home for those in need of a facility designed to meet the specific needs of each individual and became executive director in 2003. SON Valley was finally born on July 5, 2007, and sits on eighty acres north of town, at 461 Goodloe Road. “This facility is probably the last one of this type in the nation. As soon as the home opened, the national trend became for these individuals with special needs to live independently in the community, but that doesn’t work for everyone or for their parents,” said By Guest Columnist Canton Public School District Superintendent Gary Hannah I recently made the de- cision, along our with Board of Trustees, that the Canton Public School District will be using the vir- tual instructional model until further notice. This was a tough decision, but it was one that we made with the best interest of our students, families and com- munity at heart. I’m aware that this may be an inconvenience for some parents, but it is the safest option. We are currently making plans to ensure that your children re- ceive the same level of quality, SON Valley Administrator and Direc- tor of Nursing Sarah Stowers, who has been there since day one. SON Valley will prob- ably never be able to get approval to expand, be- cause that would make it an institution. “We have a certificate of need and can have no more than twenty resi- dents living here,” said Stowers. In order to qualify for admittance, one must be tested by the state and be identified as intellec- tually disabled…mild, moderate or severe. The adaptive skills, meaning what they can really do, are also assessed. Dr. Farhan Nafis is the medical di- rector of SON Valley. Nafis is also an ER physician but is on call for SON Valley all of the time. He is required to do a full physical on each resident at least every sixty days, but he typi- cally goes every thirty days, and also talks to the nursing staff and reviews the medications. A variety of RNs and LPNs work around the clock at the fa- cility. “We really ask that the community pray for Son Valley, that we can help as many people as we can,” added Stowers. “If they know anyone or have someone with an intellectual disability, please come talk to us. We can steer them in the right direction. Bill and I know how to get them the help they need.” SON Valley currently consists of three differ- ent avenues to help the community. The Intermediate Care Facility is located on the original property in Canton and consists of two large homes, which house ten residents in each. The Community Liv- ing provides indepen- dent living through various houses and apartments in the Jackson Metro area. A member of their direct care staff is always present. The Community Centers, locat- ed in Brandon and Ridgeland, offer our top priority, and our teachers and administra- tors are developing plans that will ensure that our students will continue to receive instruction that is tailored to each child’s in- dividual needs. Despite the fact that we will not be in a tradi- tional format when school starts, rigor- ous instruc- tion and in- dividualized learning will continue to be the driving forc- es of our academ- ic plan. Additionally, we are planning sessions rigorous instruction that they have received in a tra- ditional format. Our teach- ers, principals and other staff will be in the build- ings every day, teaching from their classrooms and prov i d i n g s u p - p o r t as if your children were physically present. In the next few days, prin- cipals will be post- ing infor- mation for parents about how to check out devices for children who need them. Quality teaching continues to be cont. on page 3 cont. on page 17 Special to The Canton News Special to The Canton News 8:30-6:00 M-F 8:30-12:30 Sat Stace Cauthe Sander & Bil M b 1301 East Peace Street, Canton 39046 601-859-4212 Mosby's is once again excited to serve you inside our store. Please visit us during our normal hours. For your convenience, our drive thru and curbside pick up options are available to you. Please call ahead for faster service, 601-859-4212. W ar prou t b your hometow pharmac an w ar her t servic your healt car need !