MPS schools to participate in Autism Awareness projects

The Montgomery Public School system says several of its schools will be participating in events to mark the 2014 Autism Awareness Month, which takes place in April.

Wilson Elementary - Students will participate in a campus parade around the school at 9:30 a.m. on Wednesday, April 2. The event will also include a balloon release ceremony in recognition of the special challenges faced by students with autism.

Wilson Elementary, which houses one of three dedicated elementary autism units in the district, will also hold a "Light It Up Blue" event at 6 p.m. for the community.

The event will include special performances by the Wilson Singers and students in the autism unit. Representatives from MANE, Miracle League, Easter Seals and Alabama Autism Society Walk will set up tables and will provide information about their services for youth and adults with autism.

MPS Special Education Director Katrina Johnson will serve as guest speaker. At the end of the program, the school will be lit with blue lights and will remain blue through the end of the month.

Garrett Elementary and MacMillan International Academy - Students will celebrate "Light It Up Blue Day" by wearing blue shirts in honor of Garrett student Chandler Robinson, an autistic student who drowned in December. Members of his family will be at the school at 10 a.m. Wednesday, April 2 and Garrett students will wear shirts with Chandler's name on the back of them. MacMillan students will wear their shirts to show support for Chandler's sibling who attends the school.

Morningview Elementary - Students will hold an Autism Parade & Balloon Release event at 2 p.m. Wednesday, April 2. Children will parade around the campus with signs made with puzzle pieces. The puzzle piece is a symbol for autism that is used to demonstrate the complexity and the mystery of the disorder.

Chisolm Elementary - Students will wear blue shirts and jeans in honor of "Light It Up Blue Day."

SATURDAY, April 5  - The MPS Special Education Department will participate in the Alabama Autism Society's "Walk for Autism" from 8:30 a.m.- Noon at Ida B. Young Park on Vaughn Road.

Representatives from several community organizations and clubs, churches, the Montgomery County Sheriff's Department, City of Montgomery Fire Department, local colleges and universities and schools will participate.

Food, inflatables, face painting and fitness activities will be available for children. Walkers can register online at