Return to the Parents Forum | Post a Follow-Up

 o
Gearing up for important meeting a school....DS

Posted by believer (My Page) on
Sat, Jan 31, 09 at 18:12

I've posted before about my DS16 and his struggles in school because he has dyslexia and other learning disabilities. He is in private school which we pay dearly for and also has an academic coach, which we also pay for.
The coach is less than we paid for his full special ed. program. He has been in this school since 6th grade and is now a Jr.

I have a tutor for him in Geometry. She is very experienced in working with students that have learning issues. She has been advising his teacher at school on what she has observed is the best way to teach him. That involves time of day, length of assigns and so on. He had a test in glass that he did not finish. A couple of days went by and his teacher approached him after school and told him that she wanted him to finish the test NOW. He told her that he was really spent after the day at school and it would be better for him to finish it earlier in the day. She was very blunt about it and said basically..."No, you will finish it now."....DS son asked her to call his tutor and teacher said "No. This does not involve her. It is your responsibility."......He called me....I told him not to finish the test.

The Principal told DS that he felt that DS needed to be more respectful to teacher. After speaking with the tutor and having her suggest that I pull him out of the class and have her finish teaching him for the year I called and left a voice mail for the Principal. Thus a meeting scheduled for Monday after school.

I am prepared to pull him out school on that day and have him start at a public school. He was going to do that next year but I am soooo tired of dealing with teachers that refuse to educate themselves on his situation. Even with the advice of his tutor and his coach this teacher won't "get it".

I emailed the coach, detailing the situation and asking her to come to the meeting with all of DS's paperwork and evaluations and anything that I would need should Monday be his last day. She is ticked at the teacher and not understanding what is up with Principal since my DS's learning situation is well documented and other teacher's have been happy to work with him. This is his first year without an IEP. He tested to highly on the years final tests to qualify for and IEP. It puts him in a tricky situation. He has a high IQ but his dyslexia and other issues make it difficult for him to get everything he knows out on paper.

I am venting. I have decided that at 3rd quarter since this teacher is still not willing to get on board with things and the Principal will not allow our tutor to teach DS the rest of the year we are walking out and I am finished. This kid has fought everyday since he was 5 years old to get through his jumbled up brain. It is time, IMO, that he have things his way. School for him has been a nightmare for both of us.

SD10 is also at this school and will remain there. I am hoping to be able to conduct myself in a controlled manner while still having standing firm on my convictions and expressing my displeasure with the whole thing. I feel that since we have paid so much in tuition over the years and since DS has been in the "Discover Program" since 6th grade that we should not have to deal with this any longer. This teacher has had her last chance. I have witnessed disrespectful teacher before and do not like the fact that students seem to always get marked as the bad guys. DS had a teacher here once call him a "wimp" in front of the class. I told the teacher that he would lose the respect of my son and he would not be able to reach him if he had that attitude as a teacher. Besides, I would not tolerate that type of treatment. The teacher promptly apologized to my son in front of the entire class. He went on to be one of my son's all time favorites.....again....venting....sorry.


Follow-Up Postings:

 o
RE: Gearing up for important meeting a school....DS

Good for you for fighting for what your son needs.

From personal experience as a teacher I know it can be frustrating working with kids with issues like your sons. While some genuinely try their best there are others who make it obvious they are not trying and they do hide behind their diagnosis and do much less then they could. I am thinking that the teacher involved has that idea about your son. Hopefully this meeting will put that idea to rest and you all will come to a conclusion that will help your son, even if it is pulling him out of that school. Best of luck!


 o
RE: Gearing up for important meeting a school....DS

Even if he has no IEP anymore, teachers could and should accommodate to meet his needs. Also the first year after being decertified it is wise to continue some of the accommodations to make a transition smoother.

i have to say that unless DS attends school for gifted, private schools are not very good wiht accommodating special needs. I would look into good public high school in a good afluent area. I moved so DD could attend school that i wanted. DD has no special needs but if she would, I would move even more likely.


 o
RE: Gearing up for important meeting a school....DS

Finedreams,

Schools in our city have been historically very accommodating to kids attending school out of there district. I do have to have the request filled out and approved. I am hoping that it won't be a problem. The school that we are looking at is new and quite large so an over crowding issue should not be a problem.

DS has attended both public and private school. He attended public school until 5th grade and they actually had more difficulty with his diagnosis than the private school did. The private school had a program in place that was called The Discovery Program. It is run by the National Institute for Learning Disabilities. I was happy with the program while he was in it. The lack of willingness on the part of this particular teacher to acknowledge that DS has a learning disability baffles me and I want to get to the bottom of that tomorrow. I have suggested in the past that she visit with his other teachers that he has had for years and perhaps they could give her advice on how best to work with him. She did not do that. One teacher told me at the last conference that he did not know what I was doing but that he hoped his children turned out to have half the character as teenagers that my DS has. An obvious statement that DS is not a "problem" student.

There have been several teachers in this school that many parents have taken issue with. A couple of them did not have their contracts renewed the next year. This is not my first time at having to sit across the table from a teacher at this school and speak my mind. DS had a science teacher that had a very cocky attitude and many parents had spoken up about him. When my turn came and we were sitting in the Principals office he thought that he could feed me BS and I would take it. When I didn't he said " Why Mrs. ------, are you questioning my integrity?"....I said..."I most certainly am. Just because it comes out of your mouth does not make it true." He was shocked.....He was gone the next year.

I have calmed down since Friday but my convictions are the same. I want DS to be allowed to be taught by his tutor or we are leaving. I hope that it doesn't come to this but I am helping to pay her salary and I should be satisfied with her performance as a teacher. They should not have a problem with my continuing to pay her salary while also having to pay someone else to teach him. The entire point of being a teacher is to teach. I would think that she would want her students to retain as much as possible. Yes my DS presents a special set of circumstances but she'd be well advised to embrace that. This is her 3rd year as a teacher. She has much to learn. I do not want to disrespect her but I will stand my ground with her. I am prepared to burn this bridge where she is concerned.


 o
RE: Gearing up for important meeting a school....DS

So what happened today??


 o
RE: Gearing up for important meeting a school....DS

DS will be taught by his tutor for math. He needs to decide which school other than this one he wants to go to so that I can get the ball rolling. The Principal wants DS to apologize to the teacher for being rude to her. I don't have a problem with that and feel that it will be good for DS to humble himself and apologize. DS isn't happy about that. I didn't expect that he would be. He'll have work it out in his he head. He does need to show respect to authority.

I told his teacher that I did not feel that she had the resources to teach DS in the way that he needed to be taught. Having other students to attend to made it impossible for her to give him what he needed. She felt that he totally did not even try in her class. I told her that was because he needed one on one teaching and he needed a lot of verbal work on her part. His tutor can give that to him and after a session with her she is spent.

They had some really good things to say about him but the Principal wanted to know why, if I knew that DS hated it there so much, I did not have him change schools sooner. I told him that it had more to do with his driving during winter weather than anything else.

I would to go into it more but I am so tired tonight. I slept little last night. Our old Principal's 4 year old son passed away Sunday morning. I found out last night....had dreams about it, stressed about the meeting but mainly am grieving for this little boy's family. They kept us all in the loop through emails after they moved to Mn. His daughter was in SD10's class....very sad situation. The little boy fought this from the age of 10 months.....I'm just very tired. Sorry.


 o
RE: Gearing up for important meeting a school....DS

To add a little more info to what I posted last night I must say that the meeting was much more calm than I had anticipated. DS's math teacher was very mild mannered in my presence and seemed a bit nervous. The Principal took her side where the confrontation between DS and she were concerned. Not too surprising there. I do know that DS can be hot tempered and his frustration over his learning disabilities gets the best of his at times. He needs to learn to control himself. The Principal said that he had complaints from other students about how DS had spoken to the teacher. There may have been students that complained but I rather expect that it was students that are in the clicks of the "Holier than though" group that are very judgemental and the DS doesn't get along with on a daily bases any way. This is a Christian school and what we have found is that if you don't have money, don't play sports and aren't on the honor roll you don't fit in. Never mind that those kids may very well be the biggest drinkers and the most sexually active in school. Not what I was expecting a Christian school to be. I have told teachers there that they can teach the students the Bible, insist that they memorize the verses but cannot insure that it becomes embedded in their hearts......off on a tangent there...sorry.

Last night DS felt like he had lost the war since he was really hoping that I would yank him out the school. I had to explain to him that he had to look at the big picture in little increments. He had won one battle thus far and that was to be taught by his tutor for this class. As soon as he decides which school he wants to attend we can move forward there. So it is one step at a time. I also told him that even though he didn't get everything that he wanted he was learning valuable lessons here and that it was a growing experience.

I was happy with his coach. I was happy with his counselor. They both complimented DS on his kind heart and ability to express his feelings in an articulate manner. I told them that for him to be able to humble himself and apologize is a big deal for him. That although it doesn't have anything to do directly with his outburst towards the math teacher he has a great pain in his heart from his father and the fact that they have not spoken in over 3 years is just under the service for him and is something that I feel fuels his anger. He also will not just say the words to apologize, he will search his heart until he come to mean it and then he will speak to the teacher.

To get him to graduation is the goal. I feel that he has many teachers at this school that have grown to really love him. His math teacher is new, only having taught a couple of years. He has been a challenge to her and I think she has been caught totally off guard by his situation. Do I think she could have done a better job? Yes. I was in college for a few years in education. I was headed in the direction of working with the kids that were hard to reach. As a teacher's aid I worked with the pain in the butt kids in class and had wonderful results. They did not intimidate me. I think DS did intimidate her.

I'm sorry that DS hates school sooo much. He may not be completely happy in another school. I told him that he has to look beyond that and have faith that if he places his trust in the Lord that God will guide him. There is a plan for him and this time is just a flash in the pan but necessary to help ready him for future situations.

I told him that at his age kids think that "When I am ..... years old I'll finally know everything." That is not true. He is expected to continue to learn his entire life and he will learn that some of what he thought he knew was incorrect or that there is so much more to it than he ever imagined. I told him that God designed it that way and that when he stops learning he will stop living and that won't be for a very long time.

He is a good kid. He has more challenges than most but he can do it. I will be beside him, behind him and sometimes in front of him his entire journey......He is my son and I adore him....blemishes and all.


 o
RE: Gearing up for important meeting a school....DS

All I can say is that I think you are a great mom.


 o
RE: Gearing up for important meeting a school....DS

Oh my goodness Weed.....thank you so much. I feel like I'm just stumbling all over myself so much of the time. I have to give so much credit to God and my kids.....they are all such forgiving souls....Lord knows I need a lot of forgiveness. Bless you for your kind words....they encourage me....I needed to hear that more than you know today.


 o
RE: Gearing up for important meeting a school....DS

Believer, you are doing a good job with that boy of yours. Do you plan to change schools this year? If not, be sure to check into the school you want and get your son's records reviewed to see what will transfer and what he needs to take to graduate. Be sure to find out so that he can make up in summer school a missed class if he has to. Also, you want to get him registered as soon as they allow for next year's classes so that there will be room for him in those classes. If he needs to take some classes in the morning when he is freshest, you need to get that discussion going too. They may want to test your son to be sure he should continue to be out of special ed classes or accommodations, so you need to allow time for that so that when he starts his senior year, he will have a strong start. Our high school students meet with their counselors and select next year's classes in March, FYI.

Also, if you don't know, many colleges and universities are very welcoming to students with learning disabilities. He needs to take classes that will help him succeed at the university of his choice for the area that he wants to pick as his field of interest. Also, talk to the counselors about any need for accommodations for his SAT test if you have not already.


 o
RE: Gearing up for important meeting a school....DS

Sheila,

That is very kind of you to say....thank you so much.

I just spoke with the special ed teacher and another woman (don't recall her title....sorry) on Friday. I went to the Administrations building and filled out a request form for him to attend outside of his district. When the school receives this form then they will request all of his transcripts. Summer school was mentioned as a possibility should all of his requirements for public school not be met as of yet. I talked with DS about it and he understands that. I also asked if credits for his geometry would be accepted given that he is now considered a "home school" student since his tutor is teaching him outside of school. The credits will be accepted. Thank God.

If we are able to get him going in the last quarter of this year without too much trouble then his new school knows that is what we want to do.

The SAT test has concerned me. We will have to discuss that however I think he will attend the community college at this point in time.

Just a little side note...a proud mamma here....he received a bronz metal in the state art competition this year and we are going next Saturday (girl friend in tow) to see it presented to him. Last year he received a silver metal. I have it hanging on my lamp in my bedroom.

Although he tested too high at the end of the year last year to qualify for an IEP the special ed teacher said that they still would work with him to adjust his class work load. Something that I was concerned about.....Boy when this kid graduates I will be so thrilled!!!! It has be a long hard road. Bless his heart. God has a special plan for him....for us all!


 o
RE: Gearing up for important meeting a school....DS

Community college will certainly be a good step and will eliminate the need for a SAT or ACT score.

Graduation will be a real achievement for your son, but I hate to disillusion you. Mamas worry about their kids for the rest of their lives. If there are no big problems, we fret about little problems and are often good at making mountains out of molehills. And then, there is the next genertion! We can start all over with them!

Hope all goes well with the transfer.


 o
RE: Gearing up for important meeting a school....DS

Sheila,

Thank you...and I know I will always be concerned. You sure have no idea until you have them, how much of your heart they inhabit.....Thanks for your concern.... :0)


 o
RE: Gearing up for important meeting a school....DS

community colleges provide great help to students with special needs, acommodations and all. that's the way to go! after community college he can move forward if he wants to, but that's the best plan. plus they are inexpensive compare to universities. good luck


 o
RE: Gearing up for important meeting a school....DS

Thank you Finedreams....He may not grow up to be a lawyer but when he was asked in a questionnaire at school what he hoped he would be remembered as he said .."Being the best dad that I can possibly be." ....I was teary this evening when I was praying for him and his friends to have a safe trip to a concert out of town....he bent over and kissed me and hugged me.....Man I love that boy. All of this without a Dad that gave a damn....will wonders never cease!


 o Post a Follow-Up

Please Note: Only registered members are able to post messages to this forum.

    If you are a member, please log in.

    If you aren't yet a member, join now!


Return to the Parents Forum

Information about Posting

  • You must be logged in to post a message. Once you are logged in, a posting window will appear at the bottom of the messages. If you are not a member, please register for an account.
  • Posting is a two-step process. Once you have composed your message, you will be taken to the preview page. You will then have a chance to review your post, make changes and upload photos.
  • After posting your message, you may need to refresh the forum page in order to see it.
  • Before posting copyrighted material, please read about Copyright and Fair Use.
  • We have a strict no-advertising policy!
  • If you would like to practice posting or uploading photos, please visit our Test forum.
  • If you need assistance, please Contact Us and we will be happy to help.


Learn more about in-text links on this page here