Friday, January 16, 2009

One for the win column...

Anyone who has been following my Twitter updates lately will realize I've been in a fightin' mood lately. It take quite a bit to get me to the place where I am loaded for bear and ready for a fight. I'm really a pacifist at heart.

But there are times when things are just so incredibly messed up that I am spurred to action.

This usually means lots of pontificating and gesturing, and wearing my "Don't fk with me" boots regularly.

The issue du jour regards a little boy with autism, his emotionally fragile older brother, and a system that can't seem to find the forest for the trees.

Special Education teachers base their jobs on numbers. The number of kids you have on your case load and the number of 'touches' or contacts you have with those kids per day determine whether you are a full time teacher, or a part time teacher or if you are working over time. It is an archane and convoluted formula that those with advanced degrees in math will struggle to complete correctly, but its what we've got to determine when we can say UNCLE - I'm FULL!

Our elementary LRC teacher is perilously close to being FULL. So the 'logical' move was to give any new incoming students to me.

Except the two in question are..... 5 and 8 years old. Oh, and one, the 5 year old, has autism. Oh, and I am a middle school teacher.

I was confronted/accosted in the hallway (AGAIN! That ruddy principal just loves to take you on in the hallway!) and was told how I had to MAKE SURE I got it worked out and convinced the mother that I was the best person to take her kids and blah blah blah blah blah.. or ...

they would take away my language arts class.


No way is it right, best practice, or in the best interest of the child to have him serviced in a middle school classroom... No Freaking Way!

No one heard me. No one, except the mother... who called the district... who sent out a truly cracker jack gal who happens to run the elementary special education department.

A very long and drawn out story made short for prime time... we got the schedule worked out so I can KEEP my language arts kids (a class, by the way, that I took to help them out of a scheduling snafu so big it was causing headlines) and the children in question can be serviced by the appropriate personnel.

See.. maybe someday they will let ME rule the world. All the problems would be solved with some heavy negotiations, and a good pair of 3" heels!

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