One Elm Street Elementary School teacher is using her educational training, as well as at-home experience, to make Rome City Schools an advocate for students with disabilities.

Jessi Presley is a special education teacher at Elm Street Elementary who, on May 9 at the State Board of Education meeting, was appointed as a member of the State Advisory Panel for Special Education.

Presley will serve as a parent of a child with disabilities on the panel and will work alongside educators, superintendents, university professors, state agency representatives, individuals with disabilities and advocacy group representatives who have been handpicked across the state.

“I am beyond excited to be appointed to the SAP. To be able to advocate for children with disabilities and their unique needs is truly an honor and privilege,” Presley said. “I have always considered myself to be an advocate for all children, but this role will allow me to do so at a higher level to impact more children.”

Not only does Presley spend time educating special needs students at Elm Street, but she is also the mother of Jules Presley, a student at Anna K. Davie Elementary School, who is also a special needs pupil.

“Knowing that I can use my experiences as a teacher and a mom to help make a difference for other children is a dream come true. I really want to use our journey through life as a special needs family to be a voice for other children whose parents or caregivers may not be able to do so for one reason or another,” she said.

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