Tuesday, September 13, 2016

When your child doesn't fit the Public School Mold

What happens to those kids who just don't fit into the Public School definition of a Good Student or Special Needs Student?
I want to tell my story so other parents don't get discouraged as I have many times and give up as I wanted to at many points.  Instead I kept saying "I am the only one who will advocate for my child and I can't give up on my child."
So I kept on, got mocked by family and friends and even my spouse.  They said I was babying my son, enabling him, making excuses for him, and on & on.  It honestly had me in tears many days.   Feeling like there is just no hope for my son to learn and succeed is the worst feeling in the world.
For me,  it was worse because my child was bright-  No Joke- and no Parent Opinion-  He was and is a BRIGHT :CHILD- able to learn beyond limits!

Follow as I will be adding to this all week-  I have emails and lots of inside info to share with you guys!
His first day of Middle School-  The downward spiral began (not that we didn't struggle before)

My emails only go back to 2010 so the words I share in quote from teachers will be from end of 5th grade on.
A little history on my first born.  He was born big and a bit early lol.  10.4 pounds.  I never wanted to have kids or so I thought as I really wasn't sure what kind of mother I would be as my upbringing was lacking in empathy and love so to speak.
I seemed to be great with kids however,  other peoples kids of course.
Working at a Montessori pre-school was my first real experience with children that weren't related to me and I loved it.  College seemed so out of reach for me but eventually I made it work and began going to school to be a teacher.
Surprise!  I was pregnant and finished that fall semester of 2009 thinking having a baby would be a breeze and I would return for the Winter semester.    Well, Guess what?   I was sooooo wrong.
Emergency c-section and a non-sleeping baby led me to not go back so soon.
He NEVER SLEPT.  HE CRIED ALL THE TIME.  He threw up all of his formula!
However, he did everything else early and seemed to be oddly smart for a baby and toddler.
This toddler watched the news and Wheel Of Fortune.  He talked like a mini grownup and loved to converse with adults.
At three years old he began putting words together and before age 4 he was reading books that most Kindergartner's would be reading.  Reading Encyclopedias, Newspapers, Magazines, and everything around him was his favorite thing.  There were many days I just wished he would be a regular little boy.  I was very fortunate to later go back to school just long enough complete my Associates and a little more.  Substitute teaching was my new favorite job.  I also was able to work the before and after school program at the school I was substituting at.  My son was able to be with me for most of this.  He was smart but we were able to get him into the Pre-school program at that school which was 1/2 day 4 days a week at that time.  We were hoping pre-school would help him learn to get along with kids his own age.  It really didn't produce the results we had hoped for but there were good days and bad.  He had horrible night terrors and sometimes would say the most off the wall things for a 4 year old.  So therapy it was.  We were sent to get him evaluated and of course he was super bright blah blah blah, but that didn't help us make our little boy fit into school better.  He spent most of Kindergarten in a desk in a corner.  His folders came home full of sheets not completed but with great drawings on the back.  I asked him if anyone ever noticed he wasn't completing the worksheets.  His response "No, they never come to check on me so I just draw on the backs of all of them."  And this was pretty much how Elementary school went.   We were allowed to switch schools in the district due to some very inappropriate situations in Kindergarten and an embarrassing health issue.
He didn't ever really make any close friends in Elementary school and had some bullying situations he didn't deal with so well.
Then the Math Block happened and this is where we will begin.
"Please, Please, Please ok I'm begging you to help your child with their multiplication facts.  So many do not have them memorized and it really hinders their ability to do 2-digit multiplication.  We are starting division Monday and you absolutely have to know your facts in order to divide.  It is really surprising how many students are struggling with remembering their facts but ask them the words to a song or how to play a video game and NO PROBLEM! :-)"  From 5th Grade Teacher December 2010

My Email Response
" He didn't have his math so had to miss recess.  They had 2 days to get it finished.  Gordon and I had a heart to heart yesterday about his effort at school.  He is doing the bare minimum and has a bad habit of throwing away papers that he needs."  From Teacher 5th Grade Feb. 16 2011

Email in April of 2011 to 5th grade teacher