Dear Apple CEO Tim Cook

Now in the whole big idea of this blog, lets be real. Does Tim Cook really browse blogs daily and listen to the little people? I mean he has a multi-billion probably trillion dollar company to run as well as staying ahead of the fast pace changing world of technology so highly doubtful.But here it goes

Dear Tim Cook,

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That cute little boy is Jacoby. He is an onry smart funny 5 year old (6 this month) who is the strongest kid you may ever(or never) know. He likes knock knock jokes, silly noises, playing outside, fishing, and hugs. And once again he is cute (just look at those eyes).

Jacoby started kindergarten this year and it was a huge moment for him and us. He was included in his classroom (yay Fremont for inclusion) and he loves learning, coloring, reading, and has even moved to level F in rocket math (kind of a big deal).

Jacoby has Spina Bifida and living in a smaller town he is one of the few in a wheelchair and the only one in his class in a wheelchair. It makes him stand out so when he could stay in the classroom it was great for him to feel a part of the ‘normal’ class. Jacoby also has corticol vision impairment so it means his vision center in his brain did not form appropriately and he has a hard time seeing.

I am not one of those people asking for hand outs or freebies. I am not going into my sob story because there is not much sob involved. Jacoby is amazing and doing so well!

But I do want to proposition you about maybe a next venture in your company that would be a huge hit. I mean huge. Especially in the special needs community.

We can not get an Ipad because of the magnet in them that holds the cases together. Our neurosurgeon greatly advises against it because Jacoby has a shunt that the strength of the magnet you put in them can adjust his shunt, which has adverse effects including seizures or death if the shunt adjustment is not caught soon enough. So yes, it sucks.

Jacoby loves being a part of his classroom but in some classes that use the Ipads for educational purposes, he is excluded because of his shunt. It is not worth the risk to him. So for this boy who is dying to fit in and already stands out because of his wheelchair, has to not be involved in what would be such a fun thing for him to participate in. Plus Ipad would be awesome for his vision since he can make writing and images bigger to see better.

Many of my friends are in the same boat. And many kids with shunts don’t have Spina Bifida, just hydrocephalus.

So here is my proposal. I know many special needs moms with kids from all different special needs areas including the physical and mental special needs talk about Ipads and all the opportunities it could provide for their kids. I think you should bring back the original Ipad. The ones without the magnets so that fearing mommas like me can buy it and send it to school for Jacoby to be included. I think you should bring them back and target them for Special Needs families. I know we could get old ones but I’ve been on a list for a year now waiting for one and none are to be found.

Or just make a new Special needs kid friendly version without the magnet. Maybe with better area to grip or cases with side handles so those with poor fine motor skills can hold better. And of course sturdier because kids like Jacoby get excited and shake and tremor and if it drops, oh boy I can only imagine the damage.

I think part of a great company is compassion. I know it is there because your company has done and donated so much already. Like I said this is a business proposal. With increased rates of special need kids as well as inclusion in schools, maybe this is your next step , which would not only be awesome but make you very popular with the public.

I hope you have a good weekend and maybe take like 30 seconds to think about it or more. It really is a good idea.

Sincerely,

Shonda Knop

UPDATE: Since this post, we, with the help of an Apple rep, were able to find a generation 1 Ipad for Jacoby to use in school this year (1st grade). Unfortunately the school has gone to Ipads for many learning classes and the newer technology does not allow for Jacoby’s Ipad to keep up or run some programs. Look for a change.org petition coming soon!

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