There is a special program at Lake Havasu High School that shines a bright light on students with different abilities. The Shining Stars program is led by Monica Dunbar as well as Susie Millon, Shawn Welde and Kay Hoffman.
The Shining Stars Club provides a fun safe space for both SDC (Student Development Center) and STC (Student Transistion Center) students and safe space for moderate to severe high school students with different abilities.
“Shining Stars was started because there wasn’t a specific activity besides Special Olympics for students with different abilities to get involved with. This year, we tried to get more mentors and ‘big buddies’ to collaborate with our Shining Stars Club members to organize activities for them,” said Monica Dunbar.
After school theme parties include Valentines, Christmas, Halloween and the group meets once a month. On Thursday, the end of year activity this year was a ride on the Dixie Belle.
Twenty-eight students plus family members, for a total of 83, got to ride the Dixie Belle Thursday night. They enjoyed sunset cruise, and everyone brought a dish to share.
Special Education (Sped) Teachers as well as administration staff also came along on the Dixie Belle with their families.
“Of the many programs that we have at LHHS, the Shining Stars program has to be one of my favorites. As the school year gets closer to graduation, there are many nights where we recognize students. Being able to do that on a sunset cruise with some of the best students at LHHS has definitely been a highlight of the school year for me,” said LHHS Principal Scott Becker.
If anyone in the community would like to get involved with program, call Lake Havasu High School. There is also a tax credit people can apply for as well.
“We just celebrate with food and music and have fun,” said Dunbar.