Meeting with- principal & teacher from he!! tomorrow

Karen & Crew

New Member
Ryan has one teacher that just absolutely, positively will NOT communicate with me until she's had it up past her eyeballs with him.

I've asked by phone, email, notes sent in his folder, numerous times to be notified immediately if he's not completing his work or if his behavior is worse than usual but all I ever get is "I'm really too busy for all that." After our last phone call I had understood if he flat out refused to participate in an activity that counted towards a grade I would be notified immediately.

Yesterday in his folder was a note saying that he had refused to participate in literary circles for the 2nd week in a row. I was absolutely seeing red when I read that note. Maybe because I was already so ticked off I couldn't see straight I misinterpreted her intended tone but she usually has an even, although messy handwriting. Yesterday's note was scrawled: "SIGN AND RETURN!!! This is the <u>2nd</u> week in a row this has happened!!!"

I knew immediately I wasn't going to just sign and return but rather would write a note on the form. I didn't write it last night because I was so ticked I decided I should sleep on it and try to calm down. I thought I was calmer this morning so I wrote the note. My hubby said that my note definitely gave away my frame of mind.

We got to school early this am and I went in with Ryan and we went straight to the principal's office. I knew she couldn't see me this morning but I wanted to schedule an appointment in person and not be put off on the phone. I briefly explained what was going on and I now have a meeting scheduled with the principal and the teacher from h-e-double hockey sticks tomorrow morning at 9.

Ryan has a letter from his p/doctor stating what 504 accomodations he's to be afforded but they're telling me since he's working at a 3rd grade level in 2nd grade and getting almost straight A's still that he doesn't need 504 accomodations. Can or should I ask for an IEP based on his anxiety disorder tomorrow or do I need something from his p/doctor? We're seeing the p/doctor tomorrow evening.

I'm just so frustrated and angry this morning I could spit nails.


504s don't hold much water, are difficult to enforce, require no parent input, etc. As with IEPs a 504 is for any qualifying disability and pertains to behavioral OR academic problems.

We've seen the "good grades" argument often. There are a couple of threads in the archives regarding adverse impact and educational need that you might want to read.

In order to get the supports in place that your child needs, it will likely require an IEP. In order to be eligible for an IEP, the child must be evaluated by the school district.

I strongly urge you to parent refer for the evaluation. If for some reason he doesn't qualify, you can fall back on the 504 at that time. The same evaluation data can be used. is a sample letter. You can edit out the paragraph about Parent Report and submit it at a later date. There are other sample letters in the archives.

It's important to send the letter via Certified Mail -- it kicks in legal requirements for the sd and timelines that parents usually aren't aware of.

In that you have a meeting in the morning, I'd also carry two copies to the meeting. Have someone in the office sign as having received the letter.

Ex: _____________________
Received by

Date Time

FYI, there's also a thread in the archives on 504s vs IEPs.

Let us know how it goes.


New Member
I would go for an IEP as well...however, I was under the impression that a 504 does hold water. You can call your state dept. of education and file a failure to comply complaint. You also have the right to have an advocate with you at your meetings. The state can appoint one for you for little or no cost.

What I would do (and did because I am in the same boat)...mention that you are thinking of calling the State Dept. of Ed. because they are not complying with the 504 and they will start complying. If not, call.

Good luck.


<div class="ubbcode-block"><div class="ubbcode-header">Quote:</div><div class="ubbcode-body">I was under the impression that a 504 does hold water. </div></div>

In theory, it does. If it was enforced with consistency, it would. In practice, it is too often sorely lacking.

In school districts where the law is adhered too, it can and should work. After all, 504 law is written to include "special education and related services." See for more on:

<div class="ubbcode-block"><div class="ubbcode-header">Quote:</div><div class="ubbcode-body">Under the Section 504 regulation, a recipient that operates a public elementary or secondary a education program has a number of responsibilities toward qualified handicapped persons in its jurisdiction. These recipients [school districts] must:

<ul>[*]...Provide a"free appropriate public education" to each student with handicaps, regardless of the nature or severity of the handicap. This means providing regular or special education and related aids and services designed to meet the individual educational needs of handicapped persons as adequately as the needs of nonhandicapped persons are met...; [/list]</div></div>

In school districts where side-stepping the intent of the law is the practice, 504s are better than having nothing in my opinion.

<div class="ubbcode-block"><div class="ubbcode-header">Quote:</div><div class="ubbcode-body">mention that you are thinking of calling the State Dept. of Ed. because they are not complying with the 504 and they will start complying. </div></div>

Sometimes that will happen, but it depends on the school district.

If one happens to live in a school district that is just going through the motions, the parent has a problem. Believe it or not, there are still school districts in the USA that will tell a parent, "we don't do 504s."

Parents have little input, control or enforcement capabilities when it comes to 504s. School districts with their eye on the budget instead of the best interest of the student can get away with just about anything with-a 504 as long as they adhere to "procedural safeguards."

For instance, often goals in 504s are written with vague terminology such as "may" vs "shall." "May" leaves implementing 504 goals to the discretion of each educator. Filing a complaint involving a 504 written so vaguely is a waste of time.

If an IEP is written in such a manner, the parent (a full member of the IEP team) can call an IEP meeting and address the problem.

Federal 504 law does not mandate the parent as a team member, so unless State law or school district policy includes the parent(s) as a participating team member, they don't even have to invite the parent(s) to 504 meetings.