“Jimmy started shutting down whenever he used to come home from school,” remembers Ms. Solis. “I started getting worried – I asked the principal: ‘Can I come in and see his behavior?’ And they wouldn’t let me." 

"One time Jimmy came home, and he had a ruler mark [on his arm]. He said that his teacher hit him.” 

Ms. Solis struggled for years to get Jimmy’s school to evaluate him for an undiagnosed disability – even though he was experiencing behavioral issues and falling behind in class. A determined advocate for her son, Ms. Solis paid out-of-pocket for an evaluation when the school refused to provide one. She learned that Jimmy is autistic and needs special supports to learn and thrive. 

Finding out Jimmy's teacher had struck him was the final straw. Ms. Solis read the school’s parent manual from cover to cover. That's how she learned about Children's Law Center. She asked us to help her fight for Jimmy's right to special education services.  

With your support, we can fight for more children like Jimmy to receive a quality education. All gifts of $250 or more will be matched dollar for dollar, and Kite Club gifts of $1,500 or more will be matched 2 to 1!

We immediately got to work. We helped Jimmy transfer to a supportive school for students with disabilities in 2011 and ensured he received the right services to meet his academic and development goals.
Ten years later, Jimmy is thriving. He loves spending time with friends, drawing and playing the piano and drums.  

Unfortunately, the pandemic prevented Jimmy from continuing his hands-on job training during his last year of school. Ms. Solis knew this experience would be essential for Jimmy to find a job when he graduates, and she again turned to us for help. 

No matter if it’s 5, 10 or 25 years later – we are always here for the children and families we serve. Children’s Law Center is now requesting that DC Public Schools allow Jimmy to extend his school year until June so that he has the time to develop his vocational skills.
Jimmy dreams of a future where he can “make lots of new friends, help others who need help and make the world a better, helpful and beautiful place.” 

Please, give today. Your support will help us continue to reach thousands more DC children who need the right education to flourish and change the world.

With gratitude,
Judith Sandalow
Executive Director

Learn more about Ms. Solis and Jimmy at: childrenslawcenter.org/solis

Thanks to Children Can’t Wait Fund donors Diana and Stephen Goldberg, The Andrew & Julie Klingenstein Family Fund, and others, eligible gifts will be matched up to a combined $150,000 through 12/31/21.