I just finished writing this blog on my website Crankyponts.com I'd insert a link but I think it is better to just copy/paste it here for all of my redhedd brethren to read. Thank you so much for allowing this rant.
Summon a biscuit eater! (or for those that prefer to use profanity: Son of a b!tch!) Let me start from the top! I am irritated today! I am stressed to the gills and have had it up to here (if you saw me right now, my hand would be over my head). Simply put, I am worried about my son and his progression through elementary school.
We had our yearly PPT (Professional Placement Team) meeting in March. Why did I not realize back then what I finally figured out in April? Seriously, I had the opportunity in the PPT meeting to voice my concerns that my son is not doing well in school and that because they are teaching him at below grade level that he will continue to be taught at below grade level next year if the send him on to fourth grade.
So, I realized that this will be detrimental to his self-esteem as his performance in school is already making him begin to start with negative self statements like “I hate myself, I want to die, I wish I was never born, and I am stupid”. Am I to sit back and relax and let them send him on to fourth grade? HELL NO!
I had a conversation with his current special education teacher who said to me that she does not agree that he should stay back in the third grade. She espoused that he is a smart boy and should move on. She then proceeded to tell me that she would talk to the principal and get back to me. THREE WEEKS later, she got back to me. Apparently, the principal said it is rare to keep an elementary student back and the school system does not start keeping kids back until middle school. So, as I see it, if they progress him through the grades, he will be WAY behind once he hits middle school and then they will start to keep him back.
I wanted to say “Listen you dill weed, he needs to stay back because he is not performing anywhere near grade level” I merely stated that she does not know the Autism Warrior mother side of me and I have never disagreed with any services they have put in place for my son but this time, I am putting my foot firmly on the ground and it will stay there until I get what I want for my son. I told her I would take it up with the administration at the school he will go to next year.
And so, the saga continues. I filled out the entrance paperwork for the new school next year leaving the grade he will progress to next year entry blank. I wrote a letter addressing my concerns about sending him to fourth grade and that I wanted him to stay back in the third grade. I then called and asked the secretary about what happens next. She said that they do not do placements until during the summer months and there is no guarantee that they will keep him back. I made her write a note specifically stating that I am adamant about keeping him back.
Now, while writing this blog, I decided to call the Board of Education. The person I spoke with placed me on hold then came back on the line and suggested I call his current principal and set up a meeting to voice my concerns about his progression throughout this school year and how I truly believe that he is not ready for fourth grade. I just cannot listen to him calling himself stupid anymore. He thinks this of himself and what are we going to do continue to allow his self-esteem plummet just to satisfy the school’s agenda that all kids should progress forward because it makes the school look good?
Seriously, I am adamant about this and will not allow them to talk me out of it. I called the principal, she is out today, but I sure as sh!t left a voice mail and asked that she call me back to set up a meeting to discuss this matter. I am sick and tired of just passing him through when he does not have the skills for the next grade. We have done this to him since Kindergarten.
The summer before his Kindergarten year, we failed him by not setting him up with a summer program and therefore when he went on to Kindergarten in a regular education classroom, he could not handle being in the regular education classroom and it was determined that he needed to be placed in a special education Autism classroom at another school (his current school). He did well once placed and then was placed in the least restrictive environment which, is a regular education classroom. However, I do not believe that he was performing at grade level then either! I can understand him being a little behind but seriously a child being taught at below grade level and performing at below grade level is acceptable to then allow that child to be placed in the next grade because it is the natural progression of things? Seriously?
I cannot wait to have this meeting and voice my concerns. Sometimes I get a little intimidated because I am the sole parent in the meeting room up against the teachers and administrators that think they know everything about my child. Well, guess what, I am the EXPERT on my child and I am the one who decides what happens in his life not the school. Get it together, already! Stop blindly progressing children to the next grade level because it would somehow be socially awkward for the child. I call BS on that one!
When my child comes to me and cannot do his homework because he does not understand the basic concepts of math, spelling, reading, and writing, I have a real problem with that. I agree with the special education teacher in that she said my son is a smart boy but I do not agree that he should progress to fourth grade next year and I am going to get him held back if it means I have to call the Superintendent of the school system!
Enough ranting for one day! I will wait patiently for the principal to call me back and if she tries to convince me, I will tell her that there needs to be a meeting about this. I already took their advice about sending him to his district school next year but I am not taking their crap that he should progress to fourth grade next year!!
I am his sole advocate and I will have to put my Autism Warrior gear on for that meeting!
Love to all who read,
There were no animals harmed in the making of this blog but a bird did just fly past my window!
Tags: Eunice Crankyponts