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Mommy Matters: Ink 186

Students spend part of their school day screen printing, as well as creating products like mugs and buttons. (WICS)

Finding a job after high school can be challenging, but a partnership between Springfield School District 186 and United Cerebral Palsy is making sure students with disabilities have the skills they need to succeed.

It's not your typical classroom. Instead of a pen and paper, students like James Barnes are using t-shirts and ink. "I do everything here. I do printing, folding up shirts and I do buttons," James says.

It's called Ink 186. It's a program providing unique training for students with disabilities. Students spend part of their school day screen printing, as well as creating products such as mugs and buttons.

"The students would normally be attending school for 4-6 years. So, coming out here gives them a social aspect, as well as training them so that they can transition successfully out of high school," Richard Gillespie, the graphic designer with Ink 186.

Students spend part of their school day screen printing, as well as creating products like mugs and buttons.

From the popular "I Heart 186" campaign to organizations in need of fundraiser shirts, Ink 186 products can be found all over the community. Richard says, "The kids come to work, they come so enthused to work and it's great because they get to see the products they make out in the community."

Twice a week, students get retail experience selling their finished products at White Oaks Mall in Springfield. Businesses or organizations can place orders through Ink 186. For more information click the link: Ink 186

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