School holds special prom fashion show

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. - It's prom season, and many students are getting ready for the big day by choosing what they'll wear and figuring out who their date will be.

Alden Road Exceptional Student Center gets pumped up for prom with an annual fashion show.

The center is a special school for students with a range of disabilities. But those disabilities don't stop them from strutting their stuff.

"They love it and you can see by the expressions on their faces, and they get really excited because their hair and makeup is done, and they get to pick out the perfect dress, and they have a partner that walks with them," Principal Tammy Boyd said.

Every year before prom, the school holds a fashion show. The students model clothes from the school's student-run thrift shop.

Alden Road is a school for grades sixth through 12th, but the students stay until they're 22 years old. From ages 18 to 22, the school helps the students with job skills to find their place in the community.

"All of our students here have a special quality about them that we work with," Boyd said.

On Wednesday, the students had a special treat. Not only did they get to model evening wear, but they got their hair and makeup done for free by the Florida State College at Jacksonville cosmetology school.

"I'm passionate because I think people need to know that regardless whether or not a child is challenged or not, he or she deserves to be a part of society in every aspect of the world," cosmetology teacher Pat Stokes said.

Nearly 40 students walked the runway, all with smiles from ear to ear.

"We shined today. Our ladies came down that runway -- we call it the red carpet -- and our children shined," Stokes said.

The students will get their chance to shine again. Prom is on April 26.

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