Engaging with the Teacher

Since school started back up Alaric has come home with some Shit-tastic grades.  4 weeks into the 1st grade and he’s bombed all 3 math tests and 3 of 6 reading tests.  In fact the only thing he really excelled at was science, which I understand consisted of making peanut butter flavored play-dough.

After going  to the school to schedule a massive  “Let’s get to the bottom of this” meeting with his teacher, his Speech therapist, and the head of the special education program about what changes need to be made to his IEP (Individualized Education Program) my lovely wife discovered that the school was transitioning between contractors for the speech therapy and no one had even LOOKED at his IEP.  The big  meeting did not get scheduled.

The next day I went in and talked to his teacher during her free period.  I let her talk at first, and got an earful about bureaucracy and state mandated tests not lining up with school district mandated text book.  She then said that a large part of his problem is focus, and that when she’s standing near him and he knows she’s watching he performs well.  That’s when I told her that he’s supposed to have been tested individually all along, but the office (apparently still) hadn’t given her a copy of his IEP.  This brought on another polite mini-rant about paperwork and idiots.  I think Mrs. McDowell might be a lot of fun to listen to once you’ve wound her up and got a couple of drinks in her.

ANYway I expect to see a pretty much instant jump in his grades, and I learned an important lesson about communication with my sons teachers.  It’s not enough to tell them that he has high functioning autism, you need to spell out the interventions instead of trusting the system to get the paperwork right.

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