LINKS Lends a Hand

LINKS Lends a Hand


What exactly is LINKS? LINKS helps people that need more help than others and also people that need some emotional support.

The teacher who started LINKs is Rene Baese. When asked what made her decide to start LINKs she responded, “LINKs is a nationally recognized program that I learned of when I attended START training (a program that helps educators work with and teach students with Autism). The program appeared to be successful in several schools and one that was worth exploring for Ovid-Elsie.”

“The LINKs program was started about three years ago. It only had a couple volunteers for the first few semesters. Last school year was the first the program really took off.”

Baese said the program was started first in high school. “The program was started at the high school level. However, it incorporated middle school students as LINKs were paired with them.”

When asked who helped start the program she responded, “Mrs. Michelle Ott is a large piece of the LINKs program and continues to provide support today.”

Asked why she thinks it is beneficial to the kids she said, “LINKs is a peer to peer support program that helps students with disabilities develop socially, emotionally, and academically. Students with disabilities are able to connect with peers and feel included within the general education setting. Quality of life within the school setting improves for students with disabilities when he/she feels included and accepted.Therefore, inappropriate behaviors reduce as they try to align with the majority of the population. Furthermore, academics typically improve as negative behaviors no longer impede day to day learning.”