Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Reason for My Lack of Posting

I've been a very bad blogger.  Not that I was ever really good at it but I was...
adequate.
 
I've been "absent" from blogging because of what's been going on with my twelve year old son.  He is autistic and transitioned to middle school this August.  This transition has been tough terrible.  There is no way to sugar coat it; it's been heart-wrenching. 
What happened to him is unacceptable and I have been disillusioned with education.  No school should ever make a child feel the way my son felt.  Teachers {and administrators} should build children up and make every effort to ensure their success and this did not happen at all. There should be joy in the learning process and children {even hormonal preteens} should feel as if they matter and are cared for and can do anything they want.  My son came home from school feeling "worthless" and "useless" and as if HE was the problem that need to be fixed.  He cried, sometimes for three hours, after school on a daily basis.  His self esteem was {for lack of better words} in the toilet.  All because of the people who should be educating him, lifting him up and offering him every opportunity for success.  And I am one of those people as are most of you.  How can this be acceptable?  I stayed up nights pondering this, praying for the answer to why this was happening to our precious son.  I wrestled with the fact that I work for the same district that allowed this to happen.  Did I really want to fight or should I stop fighting even though what was occuring was immoral and, in my mind, illegal?
At first I thought God was telling me to try to use this to fix the school to make it better for all children who walk through those doors.  After a few months, it became evident to me that this was not His plan and I needed to get my son out of this school...ASAP. 
So, that is what we did.  Is it the perfect solution?  No.  My son is now in a totally segregated school that only has children with special needs.  He has NO typical peers.  There are only four other children in his class.  He is on the bus one hour each way.  It is very different  in every way than the large middle school he was at.  But the teachers love on him and he is feeling happier.  And right now, that is exactly what he needs.
 
I have no idea what the future holds for Nick as this is a temporary fix.  All I know right now is that my daughter's time at this school ends June 3rd and my son will never step foot back in that building..EVER. What I am wrestling with is the fact that I gave in.  I stopped fighting.  I gave them what they wanted--to get rid of my son, but it was at his expense and the expense of other children with special needs that attend or will attend that school.  As a teacher I should have faught to make things right but I just didn't have it in me.  I just wanted it to end.  This inner battle has made me question whether I should even be a teacher.
In the end, I decided I can only control what I control.  My job is to make my classroom a place of love, acceptance and safety.  I cannot change the way others feel or behave.  I know I will go to the ends of the earth to make my students feel successful and loved and that is all I can do right now.
 
Once Nick changed schools the 2nd week of December, we saw a change.  And it gets better every day. 
I've got my mind back into teaching and creating lessons for my precious first graders...and yours, too.
 
I am so excited to say I finished my morning work for March the 7th month of school.  I also modified my morning calendar to meet CCSS.  I just posted both on TPT and am extremely proud. They are on sale until the 31st of December.
Here they are:
 




 
 
Morning Work



 
I hope everyone had a wonderful Christmas and has a relaxing, peaceful break. 
 
Cecelia
 
 


8 comments :

  1. I am so sorry to hear about your family's ordeal. It's just terrible, however, I am glad that he is happier now.
    As an inclusion teacher, I have 6 Kindergartners and 2 first graders that are on the spectrum. Wouldn't you know that each one is completely different from the other? It is really interesting. This is my first year as the inclusion teacher and I haven't been trained at all! I am learning a lot on the job, but I feel bad that I could be doing more if I had the education. I am trying my best to meet their needs, the needs of the my other special-ed kids, and the needs of my gen-ed kids. I need more time in the day!
    My only wish is that the government provided more money for the cost of extra ese assistants, teachers, trainings, and materials for these deserving students.
    ~Andi

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  2. Welcome Back and I am so sorry that you had to go through what you went through with your son. My niece is Autistic and my sister is constantly faced with resistance from the school system, not as bad as what you have gone through, but any resistance is too much. I will continue to pray for you, your son, and all children with special needs. We are their voice.

    faithfulinfirst.blogspot.com

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  3. I am so sorry to hear about your experience. It is so unfortunate how educators can affect special needs kids in such a negative way. While you may not be able to fix things for all students there, I am glad that you were able to help your son.

    The Math Penguin

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  4. How horrible for you and your son. I feel your pain. My daughter has some learning difficulties and requires a 504. I have had to fight the school and teachers on more than one occasion so that they would listen, understand, and accommodate her needs. I even had one teacher tell me that my daughter just needed to learn how to adapt, I told him he was absolutely right and while she was in his class it would be his job to help her "adapt "...needless to say he was not very happy or helpful. I have come to the realization that there are many teachers and administrators that are not understanding when it comes to others needs - special or not. They are complacent in their teaching and thinking and are not willing to change. What I have learned is that I am a better teacher and mother because of these complacent people...which it sounds like you are too. All I can say is hang in there, you did the best thing for your son, and you.

    Shawna
    The Picture Book Teacher's Edition



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  5. Thank you for all of your comments. I appreciate your thoughts, prayers and support. It is unfortunate that schools and experienced educators expect our children to fit in without following their IEP and try to give as little as possible to make us happy. It saddens me that things only happen with a fight...and many do not fight at all. We, as a country, should just provide what is best for each child with a smile on our face and no fighting.
    Cecelia

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  6. It makes me so sad that your son (and your family) had to go through this. As a teacher, it is always shocking to me to see other teachers tearing children down instead of building them up. I hope that you will find a solution that will help your son to blossom and grow.

    Kelly @ I'm Not Your Grandpa, I'm Your Teacher

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  7. M heart goes out to you and your family. I have a two year old with some disabilities and I fear what is going to happen to her when she starts school. I know in my classroom, I would give it my all to help any students that enters my classroom whether they have an IEP or a 504. You are in my thoughts and prayers

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  8. Cecelia, I am so sorry that this happened to you and your son. Like you I am also a teacher/parent of an Autistic child. We too witnessed our school district fail him repeatedly and felt powerless to affect change. At some point, I had to come to the realization that my child was miserable and the administration at his school was at fault. I quickly learned that the "least restrictive environment" was actually the most restrictive environment where he was concerned. We pushed our district to place our son in a nonpublic and we never looked back. He is a much happier, better educated and well adjusted young man as a result. I believe the same will be true for your son. I suspect you have caused more change in your district than you will ever know. More often than not, what we view as failure is far from it. Please take comfort in that. I will keep you in my prayers that your family and son are at peace and that the rest of the school year runs smoothly.

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