It was a magical day in Tehachapi. More than 100 special education high school students from Tehachapi High, Mojave High, Cal City High, Rosamond High, Antelope Valley High and Valley Oaks Charter School all came together Oct. 24 dressed up in Halloween costumes for one epic dance at the Monroe Gym.

This event could not have been possible without the numerous volunteers and participants. Mrs. McCalman’s TALL (Transition to Adult Living and Lifestyle) Program started planning this event in August. The student-driven event took time to create invitations, make party decorations and implement their vision by using local resources.

With the assistance of the THS transition classes, there were games and activities for students to play such as a cake walk, glow in the dark ring toss and corn hole.

A huge thanks to the Tehachapi High Safe School Ambassador volunteers who helped the special education students hang decorations, move tables, decorate tables, greet guests and help clean up after the event. Thanks to these young volunteers, the event ran smoothly.

Lunch was provided for everyone thanks to the TUSD Instructional Service Department and Food Services. Teachers and paraprofessionals from all schools helped create a fun and safe environment for the students in attendance.

A dance would not be a dance without music. Thankfully, Andrew Ledesma from Lil’ Ntertainment volunteered his time and equipment to create, hands down, one of the best Halloween dances in Kern County! The gym was dark with brightly decorated lights and music was jamming. Lil’ Ntertainment even brought a photo booth so students could treasure this special day.

Social events are critical for all teenagers' development, and are just plain fun! Many special education students don’t get the opportunity to meet new friends and mingle. This event made that happen! I could not be more proud and thankful for all the volunteers who made this event possible. Some may call this magical, or you could just say it was good old Tehachapi spirit.

Brittany McCalman is a teacher, TALL program instructor and WorkAbility director.