Sometimes the pen is mightier than the sword. At least, I am telling myself this as I sit here fuming about an email that came from my son’s school principal.
Let me back up…
Over a week ago, we sent an email to the key players at my son school; this included the Director of Special Ed because she is also the 504 compliance officer. In the email, we discussed the advice that we were given regarding my son’s current school situation and his increasing stress and anxiety regarding school. After consulting said expert who routinely deals with highly gifted children with social and emotional issues, we decided to reduce my son’s school day.
We outlined the reasons why we were making this change and asked for their cooperation with sending work home and communicating about the afternoon activities that my TBP would be missing. We explained that this was directly related to his medical condition and a necessary change.
No one responded. Not the teacher. Not the school counselor. Not the principal. Not even the Director of Special Ed.
I spent most of last week in disbelief and honestly, each day I expected an email filled with lame excuses for the delay.
It never came.
Today, we sent another email about the plans and also stated our frustration about the fact that none of the educators responded.
At the very end of the day, we received a lengthy email from the school principal that was filled with condescending phrases and a seemingly intentional way of ignoring our questions. He recounted the recent months in a very different way and stated that he was surprised by our decision.
Really?!? Here’s what I know…
No longer will we allow the days to turn into weeks and the weeks to turn into months without any action, interest, or problem-solving.
No longer will we allow him to sit in the office drawing because they don’t know how to educate him.
No longer will we allow him to be so distraught that he cries and begs us to keep him home; he makes a strong case since we have no communication about what goes on in his classroom in the first place.
No longer will we choose an institution that doesn’t work for him, over him.
In the email, the principal spoke about all the things that needed to happen for any changes to take place. He stated that his response was from the staff and made it clear that we shouldn’t expect another email from the other staff members that we contacted. He directed us, yes…directed us, to contact our expert for a meeting so that he could hear it for himself.
Sigh. So here is my response…
I know that it is within my rights to pull my son from school. I also know that currently, he is not having a Free and Appropriate Education and that’s a problem. I know that this is a power struggle for you and I will not participate in your pissing match. I am fighting for my son. I am advocating for my son. I choose my son.
Mother (who happens to have a blog and readers who will relate, sympathize, get it!) of my TBP