Special Education. Students & Increasing Grading Scales

Discussion in 'Special Ed 101' started by imahawkeye1990, Nov 15, 2008.

  1. imahawkeye1990

    imahawkeye1990 New Member

    My son goes to a high school that has increased their grading scales this year. Roughly.....this is it 95%-100% =A, 94-86 = B, 85-75 = C 74-66 = D, <than this = F.

    He has dyslexia & ADHD & has had an IEP since 2nd grade.

    Every year he continues to make improvements & especially over the last year he's shown tremendous improvement.

    This is his first year at the "regular" high school in our district. Up until now he's attended a charter Montessori school.

    At the beginning of the year, I watched him work his tail end off.....coming home & religiously doing his homework every night after school. He balanced this with football practice & lifting weights nearly every day as well.

    He's working roughly in the low to mid 80 %'s which is ending up to be all C's. His confidence & self-esteem has pretty much bottomed out now as he is finding (like many other times in his life dealing with his diagnosis) the attitude "no matter how I hard I try it's never good enough."

    The worse he feels, the less effort he puts in it because he figures it doesn't matter anyway.

    In his IEP meeting, his Special Education. teacher & I decided we were going to write into his plan that they needed to use the traditional grading scale for him (90-100, 80-90, etc.) The administration is now fighting this because they say his IQ is 6 points over average.

    Does anyone have any experience with accomodations in grading scales or any advice for how I might proceed? I have a meeting with the asst. principal and the dist. Special Education. director next week.

    Thanks, Kim
  2. Ropefree

    Ropefree Banned

    Yes! My son is ADHD and he had a test battery in elementary school(IQ) and his lowest score in IQ was in work production....and it was this "evidenced ability" that I employed to take the pressure off myself and my son and redirect the IEP team to focus on THEIR JOB...ie the in school exspectation that the learner recieve the supports to achieve the academic excellance clearly in his ability (ie by evidenced testing).
    ANd the why and wherefor it IS the JOB of the school is this:
    the evedenced testing and the classic needs for the ADHD learner and the dyslexic
    are ,when unmet, damaging to self esteem and do thereby undermind the learner.
    What are the provisions that met those needs at the school...who empliments them and when do you get notice when he is not completing assigned work?
    Here are some phrases I use:
    Admiring the problem.....the IEP by design gives teachers the tools they require to match the learner with academic excellance...therefor what they need to do in class and during school time is achieve the learning result by their effort as professional educators.
    If your child has a high IQ but low in work production then how is each teacher and the specialist supporting the completion for your learner to exspriance success?
    Teaching to fail: when teachers interact with your learner rather than return a final draft that includes critical remarks about the content add the proper steps your learner needs to complete the top grade now. What is the point of having a dyslexic learner repeatedly fail to achieve the top grade? Is the idea that by magic he will self realize the steps to achieve it? Insstead impliment a new process where the teacher takes the draft and completes all the steps neccisary for your learner to complete it to the satisfaction and exspectaation of the teacher. Then have your learner complete the work. If that is not the correct completion have the teacher do it agian. When a bright learner does know what is needed they are not inclined to re do work in future. A basic plan can be used over and over. Also establishing a relationship where the learner is being prompted/encouraged/ invited to achieve to top grade teaches to achieve academic excelance. ( the flip side of teaching to fail)
    What specificly is in the Iep for the dyslexia? Is the learner typing? Using spell check? How is the math and other work being treated for the dyslexic to learn the methods for self checking?
    Can oral alternative tests give the learner the evidence of deserving the top scores?
    Here are some other tips I like...ask the teachers and specialist when they have used the IEP this school year? How are they themselves implimenting the provisitions? Ask for dates and times when any referall by a teacher was made to
    put the IEP provisitons to work for your learner.
    Ask them to bring a list of their wishes from their own ideas that they would like to consider including since this mucking along is not really getting a show of successes. When they fail to offer ANY then you line up the ones you, concerned parent are aware from the literature you have read on the subject
    I brought the dummies guide to ADHD attonated for my easy access to contribute rather than sitting back as if nothing can change.
    ALso as there is virtually nothing that your learner with ADHD or dyslexia needs that the regular ed group who are not themselves recieving the top grades do need so when the teachers suggest they do not have the time remind them that it is their job.
    Put e-mailing you on a weekly basis with the current status of your learners grade part of the IEP. If "the problem" is that the grades are cut in stone befor you can
    make certain that the steps appropriate for your learner are completed then interject yourself and stay there...a thorn in their side. CAll a meeting as soon as a grade hoovers below the A level. I made the benchmark the low score on my sons
    IQ score: 90% and when they did(d0..will) complain I look directly at the administaartor Principle, VP whoever and ask them to complete a current test battery to determine if this evidenced ability has changed. Forms that you can pick up and complete in the office anytime you so desire.
    Rather than ask them to change the grading for your son use this a time to ask that his services be reassessed as he is floundering and the time is now when the educational needs are federally supported and the way it is now is not working for him
    I hope something in this does help you. I recommend the book "Help my Special needs child" for the pro-active language.
    Also I titled my IEP meetings...I suggest you make a point to write down the names of the people at the meeting so that you do refer to each by their name and do not be intimidated as what does impress is that you care, you are determined and they will be happy to know that you are motivaating what your child does need.
    Go over heads anytime you are not responded to: call the superintendant call the regional administation office call the head of the Special Education dept in your district/ and then state. ask general questions relavant to your childs iep and ask what more can be added. TEll them you are worried, that your learner is discouraged..doing all the right things and that you need the specific help unique to him....where is it?
    Hope that helps. Been there, done that will do it again.
  3. imahawkeye1990

    imahawkeye1990 New Member

    Thank you so much for your suggestions. This is very helpful & reminds me that I should not approach these meetings with the mindframe that all the power rests with the decision makers in the school district. I also came to another conclusion as I was reading your post. If they were using a traditional grading scale I would not be asking them to modify that for him. So my problem is really the use of that grading scale district wide because I believe it puts the kids in our district at a disadvantage when they're applying to college, for scholarships & frankly, for lower rates on car insurance, etc. In addition to the advocacy I will do for my son, I believe I need to take on this new grading scale in general Thanks again. I'll get the book you suggested.
  4. Nancy423

    Nancy423 do I have to be the mom?

    I don't know about high school, but my difficult child's jr. high seems to have a different scale for her LDSC class. Her work is tailored to her level.
    hope you guys figure out a compromise cuz I hate that he's losing his self-esteem and momentum.
  5. Sheila

    Sheila Moderator

    The "administration" is out of line. It is expressly forbidden for anyone but the IEP team to change the IEP -- period.