Jonathan “Jon” Barsotti is an autistic teenager who lives in Southern California with his mom, dad, brother, and sister. He attends a public high school where he is in the only special education class on campus. During the 2009-2010 school year (his junior year) his teacher noticed that he was gifted in math, so she decided to place him in a regular math class with the rest of the high schoolers. This was a big decision to make because no one was sure how Jon would do in an advanced class.
Although it was a challenge at times, Jon’s hard work and determination paid off. His special ed teacher nominated him to be a student of the year. Although he didn’t win the title, all of his fellow classmates (as well as his family) were extremely proud of him.
Jon says his plans for the future is to become a special education teacher. His courage and determination are what keeps him going even when things become difficult.
He enjoys star-gazing, doing math problems, and being around animals and nature. But most of all, he enjoys putting smiles on people’s faces.