Thursday, February 13, 2014

I slayed the dragon....I think

I had an IEP meeting for Princess Bear (PB) yesterday.  As it worked out the coordinator got there about 15 minutes early just as my mom and I were walking in.  I was set.  I had typed notes and lists and the whole freakin' shebang.  The coordinator was not happy when I told her the teacher was using Disney movies on a regular basis to keep the kids quiet while she did one on on time.  She was also not happy to hear that PB is being bullied again this year.  I told her that the skill range for this room is currently way too much for one teacher to be effectively teaching.  I reminded her of the conversation we had last year in which she assured me if it became an issue she would do something.  She also mentioned that in classrooms like this that she feels the max number of children should be 5 or 6 kids.  That sounds doable.  The teacher kind of sank her how boat by admitting a few things.  First thing she said is that the reading level for the room ranges from 1st grade through high 4th grade.  I then asked home many reading groups she has in the room.  ONE.  Yes ONE reading group for a 4 year range.  Anyone else seeing the problem?   She also admitted that they are only doing corrective reading every once in awhile because the kids don't like it.  OK, she doesn't like cleaning her room or practicing piano (ok sometimes but you get the idea).  They're kids.  They don't get to dictate their own learning. 

The teacher also kept on pointing out that PB is learning and flourishing in her environment.  My response was "How much more would she learn if she was getting the time and attention she deserves?".  The teacher was also not happy that I brought up the Disney movie showing issue.  Well the woman hasn't shown she will stop unless there is someone above her to intervene.  Show something educational.  I also had it out with the Social Studies teacher for showing the film depicting the Towers coming down on 9/11.  Her response was that it was something ok by the District.  OK, we've already acknowledged that PB while in fifth grade isn't functioning at a 5th grade level.  Do they really not get this?  So next year when they cover 9/11 if the film is shown again PB will not be in class for that.  I thought it was horrendous as an adult to see this.  Why are they showing it to kids? 

The coordinator said that she is going to go to the Special Ed director and see what can be done about lowering the student to teacher ratio so these kids can get some of the attention they need.  I told her that I would check back in May.  I assured her that I'm placing it in her lap to do the right thing by these kids.  I also assured her that I would have a media circus and lawsuit on their doorstep if they didn't change it.  She knew I was serious.  She did ask me to contact the Special Education Director saying that sometimes when it comes from parents it holds more weight.  So I will contact her.  I'm still not sure that they've got the message but I think so.  Now I want to go sleep for about a week! 


WordsPoeticallyWorth said...

An interesting post. Good luck to you.

Thank you. Love love, Andrew. Bye.

Anonymous said...

Well, don't mess with mama! I think you got them where you need them to be! This situation just has to get better,if all parents would be so proactive,good for you!
Is there any resource for online classes to supplement? Just askin'?

Brigid said...

You are doing the right thing. I do hope it works out.

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Sarah said...

The district has some of the programs that the kids use in the classroom online and we utilize those. I have tons of resources at home and glean from the internet as well. Her tutor is amazing. Her tutor was a special ed teacher and is a mother to a special needs child. She is so good at working with PB.

Sarah said...

Brigid- thank you. It's hard when I feel like I'm fighting the same battle but it needs to be done. I don't understand how other parents are as upset. Actually I know they're upset but they aren't doing a darn thing about it. That I don't understand. I feel like you lose the right to b$tch if you aren't trying to make the situation better.