I was first introduced to Rush NeuroBehavioral Center (RNBC) through its ongoing partnership with the Chicago Public Library. Several years ago, I attended one of the free parent education programs on Individualized Education Programs (IEP) that RNBC puts on. My oldest daughter was entering the Chicago Public Schools’ special education curriculum. RNBC helped me become an advocate for her educational needs. For the first of many times, RNBC gave me answers, both ready and right. I have since attended a variety of RNBC programs at my neighborhood library. Each lecture and each presenter demonstrates expertise, thoroughness, and responsiveness to audience questions.
Attending RNBC’s community programs, I never imagined a more personal association with my family would develop, until my middle daughter’s teacher gave us a checklist relating to attention deficit disorder. My daughter’s gloriously exuberant behavior fit many of the items on the list.
I clearly remember a family friend, who was also a medical professional, telling me that if I wanted the “right” diagnoses and treatment for my daughter, I must schedule an evaluation with the staff of RNBC. Again, RNBC’s answers were ready and right, including advice relating to appropriate medications. They helped my daughter engage even more completely in her studies and life activities. Now she plays a mean Chopin piano Nocturne (E‑Flat Major).
My family supports RNBC because its answers should belong to everyone. I appreciate their willingness to share expertise with area public school teachers. Through school-based in-services, teachers learn how to identify and work through brain-based learning and behavioral problems. I get goose bumps when I think of the area schools currently benefiting from the guidance of RNBC professionals and the Executive Function Program. These students are learning important, life-long organizational, time-management, and goal-setting skills.
In addition to RNBC’s outreach and education efforts, I am proud to support incredibly valuable research on social emotional learning disorders. RNBC is developing a framework to study the nature, assessment, and treatment of the social and emotional difficulties facing children with a variety of neurobehavioral disorders including: high-functioning autism, Asperger’s Syndrome, and nonverbal learning disabilities. Without a doubt, the world needs RNBC’s research answers.
My family supports RNBC because it is working on the right answers for the future. For years, I chaired a local school council for an elementary school with twenty-five special education divisions. Some of these divisions served children diagnosed with autism, Asperger’s Syndrome, and nonverbal learning disorders. Correct placement of these students in the appropriate division is crucial to each child’s success. RNBC helps parents, students, teachers, and professionals make sense of these complicated diagnoses while introducing effective interventions specific to each child’s strengths and weaknesses. As RNBC services expand to additional underserved communities, countless more children will be given the tools to succeed regardless of their diagnoses or socio-economic abilities.
Considering all of the above, my family is ready to give to RNBC for all the right reasons. We support Rush Neurobehavioral Center and all of the children it helps by building on their strengths.
Amy L. Carbone
Member of the RNBC Advisory Board