A 11-year-old Central Florida boy with severe brain damage at the center of a controversy surrounding Florida's policies on the FCAT has died.
Ethan Rediske died Thursday, his family said.
News 13 first introduced you to Ethan in April 2013, when his mother was upset over the state's standardized testing laws that require him to take the FCAT, even though Ethan has was born with cerebral palsy and severe brain damage.
On Thursday, Ethan's mother, Andrea Rediske, told News 13 his health had worsened, and he was being administered morphine to make his last moments as comfortable as possible.
Andrea Rediske said when she reached out to the Orange County School District to tell them what was happening, the district told her she needed to provide proof in order to exempt Ethan from taking the FCAT this year.
Rediske told News 13 she hopes Ethan's story will help change the laws when it comes to requring severely disabled children to take state standardized tests.
State Rep. Linda Stewart, from Orlando, said a bill designed to make such changes is now being revised and renamed the "Ethan Act."
"Let's hope we can get it heard," said Stewart. "I have talked to Rep. [Janet] Adkins and staff who chair the Education Subcommittee."
Orange County School Board member Rick Roach, who had been fighting to help Ethan's family, sent the following statement Friday:
Just got word from our school district that our beloved Ethan Rediske passed away today.
My condolences to the family. Ethan's life will be a beacon for change, I have no doubt about it. I promise to work as hard as I can on his behalf and the behalf of his family who loved him.
Thanks to his wonderful teachers who loved him, and nurtured him right up until his last days.