Tuesday, March 17, 2009

An Outstanding Teacher

We received a phone call from David's English teacher this morning. She had two things she needed to talk to me about. As she was telling me how much David has improved over the last five weeks my mind was dreading what the second thing would be. This was the course for many of my discussions with teachers—the "but...." that would follow. I was very glad to hear that he was progressing well in her class without his one-on-one aide.

The second thing was not a but!! During the morning television announcements they reminded the eighth graders that the money and permission slips for their field trip to Washington, DC, needs to be turned in tomorrow. The problem is that no one in her eighth grade homeroom knew anything about it. All these kids are in special education classes and the information for the field trip had not been given to the special education history teacher. The history teacher that is charge of the field trip is out sick today and no one know where the paperwork is. The teacher who called only knows that the papers and $50.00 in cash are due tomorrow.

I will be taking David to school tomorrow in order to talk to the teacher in charge. I want to make sure all the paperwork is completed properly and that the cash is received and a receipt given. I don't want an excuse down the road that prevents David from attending. I don't know if this was just an oversight or an intentional slight to the special ed classes. I will also be speaking to the office about this issue so that it doesn't happen to others in the future.

I am very happy that David's homeroom teacher has looked out for her students. She has always gone above and beyond what is in her "job description." She has a loving heart and a level head. His one-on-one has also agreed to go on the field trip with David. These individuals are a big reason that David is doing so well.

It really upsets me that the kids who are in special education are often forgotten. This has happened before. One year after buying a yearbook and waiting months for it we found that even though David's picture was taken it wasn't in the yearbook. I went to the parent who was in charge and questioned her. They had forgotten to add the special ed classes. I demanded our money back and then asked her how she would feel if her child were left out. I reminded her that just because they had issues didn't mean that the parents loved them less or that they shouldn't be included in a school-wide publication.


rita said...

I was just thinking the other day how I hadn't heard how David was doing in school lately. So wonderful to hear that he is doing so well.
And that great teacher took time to call each and every parent in her class to tell them about the D.C. trip. Exceptional!
Keep up the good fight.

Kim said...

She is an exceptional teacher. However, I got the info from the school and have made an angry phone call to the school. The regular ed kids have had the information since September. They have had the chance to make payments and we have 24 hours to come up with the cash. I also am angry that even with a one-on-one they want me to attend. I wouldn't mind going, but then I must also pay the $50.00 to go and this is due in cash tomorrow. A total of $100.00 on one days notice!
The teacher who planned and wrote the information sheet is also being dishonest. She states the $50.00 is for admission fees and transportation. The trip includes the Capitol, Supreme Court, National Archives and the Tomb of the Unknown in Arlington. All of these places have no admission fee. Since we all pay with our tax dollars you might say we already paid- again and again.
I spoke with the Vice Principal and explained that most of the kids in special ed are like David and take very expensive meds and other costs not associated with regular ed kids. David's monthly med co-pay runs just over $300.00 plus doctors appointments. So this along with the need for a parent to attend and pay in one days notice unexceptable.
She is to get back with me tomorrow after talking to the principal about the situation. I have told her that if I don't hear from them I will make a trip around lunch time in order to deal with this.
I will keep you updated on the situation.