Huver Mendez loves to read. The Lakeview Hope Academy fifth grader can often be seen thumbing through the pages of “Harry Potter,” enjoying the adventures of everyone’s favorite boy wizard for the umpteenth time.
Reading sometimes takes a little more effort for Huver than it does for his classmates. He has a visual impairment and often uses an electronic magnifying device to see the words on a page or what his teacher has written on the white board.
He doesn’t let this get in his way. Huver is learning to read brail and is fluent enough to read books at his current grade level. He is learning to walk with a white cane so he can be independent and confidently walk across busy streets.
“The thing that amazes me most about Huver is that if he struggles with something, he works very hard to learn it the next time,” said CPSD vision specialist Christine Mancillas. “He just wants to do better all the time and learn more and more.”
Huver and his family moved to Lakewood from Kennewick two years ago. Attending Lakeview has been an easy transition for him as he has gained friends, played soccer and joined classmates in picking up trash and planting trees after school.
Character is one of the Four Pillars of Student Success and provides a strong foundation to help young people develop into active learners and strong citizens. Huver shows character by working hard to overcome obstacles that stand in his way and by treating others with respect.
“He just lights up the room. He’s a really positive kid who connects well with others,” said former Lakeview Principal Meghan Eakin. “Even though he’s visually impaired, he doesn’t let that get in his way.”
Huver enjoyed his summer break but is excited to return to Lakeview to learn new, challenging math skills and be reunited with his friends after nearly three months away.