Notre Dame student with Down syndrome embraced by peers everyday, not just March 21

The sixth grade class at Notre Dame Elementary School held a ceremony Thursday as they get closer to graduation later this spring, and one of the students who did a reading was celebrated by his peers.

Posted: Mar. 23, 2018 9:41 AM

The sixth grade class at Notre Dame Elementary School held a ceremony Thursday as they get closer to graduation later this spring, and one of the students who did a reading was celebrated by his peers.

Mark Radel is 12 years old, and in his words, it won’t be long before he gets his driver’s license. But first on the list is graduating elementary school.

Mark’s mom, Mary Radel, tells NEWSChannel 2 that he will be the first student with Down syndrome to graduate from a local catholic school.

On Wednesday, World Down Syndrome Day, Mark’s dad realized just how included his son has been at this school.

“As I dropped Mark off, you couldn't believe the number of kids running, shouting, saying, ‘Mark, Mark, look at my socks, look at my socks.’ And they had all crazy, mismatched socks,” said Patrick Radel, Mark’s father. “So it was clear to me that they’ve embrace him as a friend and a peer, but also, they are learning about what inclusion means and awareness of Down syndrome. It’s a really amazing experience.”

Mark may be showing early interest in a future career as a videographer, as he got behind the camera on Thursday to interview his parents.

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