Please watch, laugh, cry, and have a great summer!
I should start with a big shout out to the special education professionals who read my blog: Thank-you Sharona, Christie, Judy, Noel, Marissa, Sue for your commitment and compassion. I’ve always been frustrated by the us vs. them mentality in special education, the one that suggests that teachers really desire to do less than their best and that parents really exist to milk the system. I’m a glass half full person and really want to work as a team for Aidan. I’ve had some struggles, and unfortunately, I also talk to lots of parents. I’ve heard some truly horrific things said, not far off from this cartoon, ‘You give your child headaches and make him cry.”
There are so many pieces that need to fall into place to properly educate a child. Funding is one of them. Vision is another. Sometimes parents and professionals don’t share the same vision. Professionals need the support of their team and continued training. Parents need to communicate disagreements and firm requests with respect, which can be difficult when emotions are running high. General education teachers need a ton more training and support. Our kids are not visitors but students. Parents need training in the law because it’s often on our side. And our language, good grief a simple thing to fix yet very powerful, needs to change. I don’t want my child taught by rehabilitative specialists and I sure as heck don’t want him in a day treatment program. This is offensive. Aidan should be educated (not treated) by teachers in a classroom, like every other student. Looking at all those pieces of the puzzle and seeing the failure at that smallest level, it’s exhausting to consider being a change agent. However, other parents have blazed the way and paid the price with their marriages, mental health, and incomes. So now it’s my turn, and glass half full, I’ll make it a little easier for the next in line.