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There was no Santa Claus in sight – but the eyes of Frisco ISD educators lit up with excitement and delight.

“This is the best Christmas I’ve had in a while,” said FISD vision teacher Melinda Loyd, as members of the Clark Middle School Destination ImagiNation (DI) team hand-delivered gifts to the Frisco ISD Administration Building.

Destination Imagination is an educational program in which student teams solve open-ended challenges and present their solutions at tournaments.

For the last few years, the Clark students have completed service learning challenges to assist special education students in FISD.

This year, the group created a library of 18 story boxes, 17 experience books and 16 adapted games – all designed specifically to help FISD students with visual impairments.

“The time and money that it would take to get this together… this is a huge gift for us and our students,” Loyd said.

Clark students raised money, conducted research and even learned Braille to put together the adapted books and games, which utilize various objects to help visually-impaired students establish concepts and experiences many of us take for granted.

FISD vision teachers will use the items directly with students and as resources for parents.

Members of the Clark DI team, including eighth graders Emma Bittner, Barrett Senn, Sara Sinnathamby and Dilan Patel, earned fourth place for the project at the prestigious Destination Imagination (DI) Global Finals, held May 21-24 in Knoxville, Tennessee.

They also accepted the coveted Renaissance Award for exceptional engineering, precision, performance and design.

Pictured from left to right: Clark eighth graders Dilan Patel and Barrett Senn, Melinda Loyd, FISD vision teacher; Shannon Kilburn, FISD orientation and mobility specialist; Heather Jefferson, FISD vision teacher; Jordan Alvis, FISD vision teacher; and Clark eighth graders Emma Bittner and Sara Sinnathamby.

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