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These third-graders in special education teacher Zach Stephen’s lunchtime friend group giggle and converse together as they enjoy lunch in the classroom. When they finished eating, they practiced taking turns while playing a game. (Photo by Sarah Young)

Teachers find success in using friend groups, lunch bunches

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Fourteen years ago Meg Farrington saw a big influx of kids diagnosed on the autism spectrum entering their schooling years at Somerset School District, and she knew something needed to be done to adequately help these students.


Farrington, who was the speech and language pathologist, asked the principal of the elementary school if she could have a few extra hours in her schedule to go to trainings and workshops to better meet the needs of these students; and he agreed.

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Sarah Young
Sarah Young joined RiverTown Multimedia in October 2013 as a news reporter for the New Richmond News. She covers primarily Hammond, Roberts, Somerset and St. Croix County Circuit Court. Previously she free-lanced for the River Falls Journal, Hudson Star-Observer, RiverTown special publications and the Superior Catholic Herald. She graduated from the University of Wisconsin-River Falls with a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Spanish and French in 2001. She completed a minor in journalism in 2004. Before working at the New Richmond News, she was an assistant manager at Philander's Grill & Bar in Prescott. She lives in Prescott with her 2-year-old daughter Carolina.  
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