First grader uses the Internet to attend class - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

First grader uses the Internet to attend class

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EDGEWOOD (KWWL)-- The Today Show introduced us to a boy who attended school through a robot. 15-year old Lyndon Baty, from Knox City, Texas, cannot physically be at school because he has no immune system. So, a 4-foot tall robot called VGO allows Baty to roll down the hallways with his friends.

One teacher in Eastern Iowa contacted KWWL for more information on that story. She has a similar situation in her first grade classroom.

When student Aidan Bailey was about ready to start kindergarten at Edgewood-Colesburg Elementary, he had to have a double lung transplant. So instead of falling behind in school he connected through Skype.

Aidan is an active, curious first grader, has spent more time in a hospital room than he has a classroom

"Aidan was born November 10th, 2003. When he was born, he had no top lip, only one nostril, only one eye, and no palate," said Lori Gearhart, Aidan's grandma.

Making the University of Iowa Children's Hospital a second home for Aidan and Gearhart.

When it came time to start kindergarten, rather than go to class, he logged on to Skype.

"To be honest I did not know much about computers. I had never turned one on until shortly before that time, but I thought this must work," said Gearhart.

Since Aidan's immune system is very low Skyping to school is a new normal.

"It works really well the only downfall to the Skype is when we have bad weather we loose Internet connection. That's the frustrating part of the whole thing," said Linda Tegeler, Aidan's first grade teacher.

Tegeler said the students have really enjoyed having Aidan in the classroom.

"They treat him like everyone else. They always want to include him and if we have partner work everyone scampers over there. They want to be his partner first," said Tegeler.

Even at home Aidan's grandma made a classroom just like the one at school.

"Every time when we are at school and one of the kids sneezes or coughs and I hear Mrs. Tegler say get a tissue. I think thank gosh we are not sitting next to them and that Aidan is not sitting there because kids don't remember to use good hygiene. Even adults don't," said Gearhart.

Aidan's teacher and others at the school are now trying to find ways to fund raise to get one of those VGO robots for him. It costs about six thousand dollars.

Online Reporter: Nikki Newbrough

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