Discussion in 'Special Ed 101' started by pasajes4, Oct 1, 2011.

  1. pasajes4

    pasajes4 Well-Known Member

    My attorney called me yesterday to inform me that our ARD is on Tuesday the 4th at 3 p.m. The ARD notice that I received (all 3 copies) state that it will be on the 5th at 9 a.m. GRRRRRR

    The other issue is with one particular teacher that counted son as an unexcused abs. when it should have been a tardy. In an email she assured me it would be taken care of (yes, I have copies). He is tardy to that class everyday as he has to travel about 1/4 of a mile from the cafeteria to her class and she closes the door in kids faces as soon as the non existant tardy bell rings and locks the door. This is the same teacher who told me that she would send work to the office for me when he was hospitalized. That never happened...I checked over the course of 3 days.

    I am so frustrated that I can't sleep nor can I sit still.
  2. seriously

    seriously New Member

    I understand (after about 15 years fighting with our school district in IEP meetings) your frustration. I hope your last comment is actually just blowing off steam.

    But in case it's not (and I can easily imagine that it's not having been there myself) my best advice is to:

    take a deep breath, go for a walk, paint a picture - do something to help yourself relax and focus on something else.

    I also suggest you read everything on Wright's Law about IEP crisis and working with the school district. Along with anything else you can find that applies to your specific situation.

    I don't know what the specific issues are that you are working on but if you can possibly take a step back and get very matter of fact about it all it will help you in every way possible.

    You have an attorney so obviously you are letting the district know that you are willing and able to go to mediation and/or due process if necessary.

    If you feel that they are not working with you and your attorney agrees, you can ask for mediation at the end of the meeting. Mediation (been through that and won $20,000 for reimbursement of expenses + compensatory ed) can be VERY helpful. Your attorney should be a good source of info about whether this is true in your case or not. If you have solid written proof of district/teacher misconduct, retaliation, failure to meet obligations in IEP then you have every reason to be confident and matter of fact with them. You have the winning cards if you need them.

    Having an attorney at meetings sets an adversarial tone and may have made the meetings more strained than they already were.

    The school district people usually really do believe that they are correct in their assumptions, that they are experts on children and know your child better than you do, that you don't understand the budget and other constraints, etc. They also usually believe that they have everyone's best interests in mind and are sincere in their beliefs.

    In other words, as a general rule they are not bad people but they are coming from a very different perspective and world view than you are. As you would expect with such a big difference in perspective, communication and understanding are hard to achieve.

    When they say something stupid, you can just say "that's nice." and go back to calmly asking them questions focused on how THEY are going to solve the problems THEY have been led (through careful questioning) to discover exist that are barriers to your child receiving FAPE.

    Easier said than done - I know this. But you have the big guns in your pocket. Keep that in mind and let the school see you relaxed and confident if at all possible.
  3. TeDo

    TeDo Guest

    Who changed the ARD meeting date? That would be first on my list of questions to ask my atty. If it was the atty's request, politely remind him that he should check with you first. If it was the SD, remind atty that you are not at their beckon call. When you get to the meeting, bring up the issue with that particular teacher. Show them the documentation and ask that something be put in difficult child's IEP stating that he cannot be "locked out" of classes period, late or not. If it's in his IEP, she can't do it. Show them the documentation that shows this teacher "lies" to you so how are you supposed to trust the SD that allows teachers to do these things. I had one teacher similar to that so a lot of things that went into difficult child's IEP were geared just to close any loopholes (and POTENTIAL) loopholes that teacher was finding to get around the IEP.

    Good luck. Make sure to PUSH for everything your son will and might need to get through school. After fighting for a year, my difficult child is no longer in the school because they made things so much worse for difficult child that he got EXTREMELY depressed.
  4. keista

    keista New Member

    Teacher attitude is exactly why I "fired" son's science teacher. Fortunately school gave me no problem with changing his class. Sped dept was pushing for me to "work through it" with more teacher education, but that's their job. My son wasn't going to be the guinea pig while they tried to set this teacher straight.
  5. buddy

    buddy New Member

    I am so sorry. All these things add up and can just keep your brain spinning. Personally, I find if I can't sleep, etc...I realize I am obsessing on what to say, what they might say, on and on and on. So I eventually decide to write it all out and then I know I wont forget my oh so important "points" and it helps me let go until I can actually do something about it. (I say oh so important because at times I look back and realize some of what I was stuck on maybe wasnt so important but everything was bugging me by then. I still discuss all of my concerns though.)
    I am assuming you are having some serious issues because you have a lawyer so I would imagine every single thing that goes wrong feels just like another scoop on the poop pile. It is just so frustrating. I hope you can breathe and make it through the meeting ok. Are you going to reschedule since there is this conflict?
  6. pasajes4

    pasajes4 Well-Known Member

    I have been having issues with the district since he was in 5th grade. My points are very clearly stated and I am ready to proceed. In all probability we will go to due process. This attorney has a battery of highly trained advocates that work with her. The attorney,after speaking with the districts attorney, felt that it was in my son's best intrest to be represented by her. She is only one of 10 attorneys that work in this field in the state of Texas.

    It is not like I do not know what they are doing or how they operate. I was a special education teacher for 35 years. I have never been a person who wanted to have it all. Just level the playing field so he has the same opp. as everyone else. It hurts me to the core that I have to "go there". I also sub in this school in Special Education. and I have seen first hand the underhanded and down right ugliness that some of these kids are dealt. I have spoken out about it and gotten kicked in the teeth for it. My son is no angel but he is not the devil's spawn this teacher treats him like. Let Justice Prevail.
  7. TeDo

    TeDo Guest

    :cheerleader::fan::warrior::sword: Go get 'em!!!! Just remember you have an army of WARRIOR PARENTS behind YOU!!
  8. buddy

    buddy New Member

    Oh pasajes4, I am so sorry. I have often felt like in iEP meetings, I almost have to hide that I work in sp.ed. It is frustrating to be so diplomatic and work with them to see their side, but then to be fought or not "in" on everything or whatever. I agree there are some ugly things that go on sometimes. While working, I have to admit there were times that the mommy part of me over took the Speech Language Pathologist (SLP) part of me and one time I even told a mom who was about to go again to have her son see a psychiatric, work on the anxiety, have his adhd medications changed...etc. that she might want to ask him about Asperger's. (this kid was being seen for "r" work in 4th grade. but obviously had Aspergers, everyone who worked directly with him thought so but ... The school psychiatric couldn't even describe what he looked like to me when I asked about him, but she got ticked I even asked (huh, it is a team process, and this is my area of expertise on your team....what the heck???) This mom and I got along great and I didn't say he had anything, but I just said to ask what they thought about that idea. This boy came back with the diagnosis that week and sure enough once the IEP was changed to Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) he got the small helps he needed and I now heard years later that he is in a gifted and talented classroom! I had to wonder how many kiddos were missed by that psychiatric. She bullied many of us on the child study teams and no one is above anyone on a Special Education. team. Everyone has the legal and ethical obligation to share any ideas that may support, or impact the child from their perspective/licensed area. ARRRGGGG. I dont miss that part. I miss the kids but not that part. Most teams I have worked on were amazing, but that time...arrggg. Still burns me. Here's hoping all goes well for you. Sounds like this person is really good so I will think positively for you! Let us know how it comes out. Hope you can get some sleep...are you a bubble bath, candle kind of person??
  9. pasajes4

    pasajes4 Well-Known Member

    I know what you mean it is really hard to be on both sides of the table. I have resolved to go into this ARD as his MOM. This time, I am not concerned about their budget, lack of staff.... If they can build a new stadium for millions (without voter consent) they can sure as @#$% get him the color overlays he was supposed to have for the last 4 years and has never had.

    So. into the fray ......

    I am a kickboxing,cake baking, weed pulling kind of gal.
  10. buddy

    buddy New Member

    you must live where I live! if not, the stadium issue happened here too! SOOOOO maddening to have health/human services and education cut and then they do that! ARRRGGGGGGG

    YOU GO GIRL! (as my neices say)... I have said while I understand your issues, only job at this time is to worry about difficult child.
  11. pasajes4

    pasajes4 Well-Known Member

    Today is THE day. New wrinkle..... my son has skipped offensive teacher's class twice and did not go to the FOCUS teacher...his reason and possibly the truth, he was tired of not being able to get to her class on time. Sigh, can you say shoot yourself in the foot. I also found out that his math teacher quit and there have been subs in the class for about a month. His math skills are very poor to begin with. Trying to breathe. He had to give up his cell phone for skipping the class. He is one unhappy camper.
  12. keista

    keista New Member

    ((((HUGS)))) Subs in math are the worst. Speaking from experience, I'd be asking the school EVERYDAY when they are getting a real teacher for that class, or at the very least, a PERMANENT sub. Son has a terrible time with subs, and when has to deal with unplanned teacher changes, he does not function well at all.
  13. buddy

    buddy New Member

    Mine too. I can COUNT on a call from school on those days. In the FBA did we not list this as an antecedent? Seriously, when behaviors are 100% predicatable I am the one who is shocked by school's behavior....will they ever get that? TODAY there is a sub in the autism room which means all day, every class, there is an issue. No matter how good they are it is the change that affects difficult child. arrgggg. Luckily it is my volunteer day so I will be there, only means they will come to me instead of call, smile.
  14. JJJ

    JJJ Active Member

    I once offered to do a functional behavior anaylsis on a teacher so that we could figure why she continued to behave in ways that violated my child's IEP and got negative results. I explained that since we couldn't implement my child's Behavior Intervention Plan until the teacher was able to follow her part of the plan, I thought it made sense to evaluate her behavior.

    The teacher was not amused but the sped director nearly died laughing.
  15. pasajes4

    pasajes4 Well-Known Member

    I love the internet. I just found an article on the incidence of low/inconsistent math performance in school age adolescents published in the Journal of Psychiatric Medicine. Wich clearly supports why he needs specific expert interventions. In other words, "The sub is not gonna cut it."
  16. buddy

    buddy New Member

    Awesome, part of IDEA 2004 is that methods are to be research based, appropriate methods that are known to target the specific diagnosis/label/areas of weakness...not just things that have been around, dont cost much, are easy to get from the gen ed. curriculum folks etc. I fight this a lot with difficult child and reading...he is not just delayed, he has specific learning issues because of the brain injury....often this gets overlooked with all the emphasis on behavior mod.
  17. Liahona

    Liahona Guest


    Thanks I really needed that today.
  18. pasajes4

    pasajes4 Well-Known Member

    It is over. I would like to say I made it through the meeting with no tears. The funny thing was that most of the big wigs at the meeting were people that I had worked with in another district. All of a sudden they could not do enough for him. Hope kiddo does his part. We will start with testing and go from there. We have put some protections in place for him until we can get an appropriate BIP in place based on a FBA that has some validity. Just wish I did not turn into a blubbering mess everytime I go to these. The aftermath for me was spending the night in the bathroom.
  19. buddy

    buddy New Member

    Congrats....Sorry the emotion of it is so overwhelming. I am willing to bet lots of us know what you mean. My stomach gets hit with stress too. Hate that.
    Try to rest today, I sure hope the stop-gap things they offered for now will give you both some peace until things are settled more.

    JJJ--that is so good and if you dont mind, next time I am going to use that!
  20. JJJ

    JJJ Active Member

    Don't worry about crying! Our sped director always puts a kleenex box on the table because it is so common to cry -- happy, sad, angry or frustrated tears -- the IEP process is difficult and reminds us of all the things our child cannot do.

    At Tigger's last IEP, his teacher broke down crying lol! (She was so proud of his progress and rightfully proud of being the first teacher to ever reach him).