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Candis Clayton – Utah School of the Deaf and the Blind

Candis is a preschool teacher at the Utah School of the Deaf in Orem. This is the second year she has taught my son who has a hearing loss. Candis is the most amazing teacher I have ever encountered and I am a teacher myself.

Every Monday we have an hour long therapy session where Ms. Candis (as the kids call her) has songs, games and activities ready to share with me. I then take these activities and do them as homework with my son. She then proceeds to have even more games, activities and songs, many of which she comes up with herself, all about that week’s theme, that she does during the week.

She teaches preschool kids that struggle to communicate but she remains patient and firm. She really loves her students and they love her back. She demands the best from each of her students which means she has to modify her activities to fit the varied skill levels of the children in her class. My son comes home exhausted every day from being challenged. And he has made miraculous progress since he started preschool with Ms. Candis.

Ms. Candis spends her own money and time to supplement her classroom with toys to encourage her students to practice communication, supplies for the numerous projects they do to practice fine and gross motor skills and even brings in food for class parties.

Ms. Candis is a loving caring teacher who deserves to be rewarded and recognized for her phenomenal work with these children. And I personally want her rewarded for her constant encouragement of me, that I can do this and even though my son has an extra challenge in life – he can achieve anything he wants to.

–Natalie Larsen & Alezo Chavez