Help! Having problem with reg. classroom teacher.

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RazorbackMom
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02 Feb 2005, 2:59 pm

Hi, I'm new to this. I have an 8 year old son, who shows most symptoms of Aspergers, but Arkansas Children's Hospital/Dennis Developmental Center "can't" fully diagnose his as such. BS if you ask me!
As a small child he was always a little different and the older he got the more "quirks" he developed. In pre-school he had some problems learning in a classroom environment, but no problem at all learning with me (1 on 1). My son is a very intelligent person. His kindergarten teacher saw signs of CAPD. We decided to let him be in an "Intergrated Classroom" where he gets regular classroom and resource work. It has really worked great. Last year, it was suggested by his 1st grade teacher that we should really think about having him tested for AS, because she and his resorce teacher could see many symptoms develope thru out the year (as did I).
ACH & Dennis tested him this past summer and could go as far as diagnosing him ADD with anxioty disorder. They all agreed that more than likely he was AS, but since he didn't have all of the symptoms wouldn't say AS for sure. He has been taking Stretera since July '04 and it has helped. We still have all of his 'Quirks", but he is able to learn a lot easier.
My problem is that the resorce teacher and I both think that he is doing so well that placing him in a "full" regular classroom on a trial basis would be really good for him. He is making all A's and is very bored with the work that resource provides for him. We are trying this for a period of 4 weeks and if it doesn't work then there is no harm done. However, his regular classroom teacher was almost nasty with her opinions. She does not want to even try. We did force her hand since it is ultimately my decision.
We tried to get her to understand that he does so much more for me and his resource teacher than he does for reg teacher, but she just didn't want to listen.
I am afraid that she isn't going to work with him to let him learn. He is capable of so much more than what he is being taught. It is really sad. It's as if she is biding her time until retirement and he is not her idea of coasting by. I do sub at his school some and have several friends who are teachers. They have all come to me and expressed concern over comments that she has made since this change.
What do I do? I don't want to rock the boat out of fear that she will stop working with him all together....

HELP!



ilikedragons
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02 Feb 2005, 3:57 pm

At least your sons teacher doesn't grab his arm and give him a lecture for not saying good morning to her until he does.



Mel
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02 Feb 2005, 4:23 pm

It is a difficult situation you are in and I don't envy you at all. How long has this trial been going on?? If its only just started perhaps she will get to know your son more and realise that perhaps he can come with the regular class fulltime. However I realise that there are some people who just won't change their minds.

If it seems that she's not giving him the work he is capable off you could try having a polite word with her first and suggest that you think he is capable of more. If that doesn't work you might have to rock the boat- if other teachers have seen her attitude about this there is a good chance you will be taken seriously (unless they decide not to discuss what they have observed). Would she really be able to refuse to work with your son it you did complain???


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Mel
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02 Feb 2005, 4:24 pm

ilikedragons wrote:
At least your sons teacher doesn't grab his arm and give him a lecture for not saying good morning to her until he does.


That is truely terrible- have you complained to the school about this??? I wouldn't have thought that any school would stand for such behaviour from its teachers.


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ilikedragons
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02 Feb 2005, 6:04 pm

No, I haven't complained, but I tried to get the school to make me switch classes with someone.



Mel
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04 Feb 2005, 4:49 pm

ilikedragons wrote:
No, I haven't complained, but I tried to get the school to make me switch classes with someone.


Sorry when I responded to your first post I had forgotten that you are not an adult- with this being the parents forum I assumed responses would be from parents which is silly really cos we all have something to offer :)

Have you talked to anyone about what is happening?? It sounds like a horrible, uncomfortable situation to be in.

Mel


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24 Mar 2005, 6:54 pm

Don't give up. I also experienced difficulties with my son's third grade teacher. Although we had always been aware that his learning style was unique, he always excelled academically. In third grade, he was paired with a teacher who simply could not look past his uniqueness and she labelled him "severely emotionally disturbed". What we found was that he was reacting to her inappropriate behavior and had him moved to an alternate class.

Teachers and students need to be a good match so I now work with administrators prior to every school year to make sure his calssrooms are a good fit. I have had to learn to be comforatable with not being popular at the school and having a reputation for being "difficult". Don't be afraid of angering an educator...you are your child's best advocate and it is worth every bit of unpopularity. Even the thrid grade teacher eventually shook my hand and admitted that she had been wrong.



Pandora
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02 Aug 2005, 7:38 am

I think it is child abuse for a teacher to grab a child by the arm and make them say good morning. If I were the child, I'd be mentally wishing them a very bad morning and a bad day and a bad week and so on.

There is so much in the press now about teachers not even being supposed to touch a child to comfort them if they've hurt themselves at school so I don't see how this person can justify getting away with being so pushy and horrible.


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ljbouchard
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02 Aug 2005, 8:57 am

Pandora,

You will find that teachers get away with alot more than you think if they feel that the parents will not do anything about it. I know of a student whose teacher would curse at him on a regular basis (and put him down in front of the other students in the process).


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Laureanne
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04 Aug 2005, 2:16 pm

Under IDEA - Individuals with disabilities Education Act he must be taught in the "least restricted environment. It sure sounds like the regular ed class with neccesary supports should be fine. I would go straight to your CSE chair and hand him a letter in writing stating that she is "impeding" your child's right to least restrictive environment. Make sure to have it in writing. I would not even bother with the teacher. It's really not her decision alone. I definitely would not let my child go into her class. She would set him up for failure and it would be a hellish year for your son. Request a teacher who is dual certified.(regular and special ed degreed). If this is the only kindergarten teacher in this building he needs to go somewhere else. It's thier problem to find him a"highly Qualified"teacher. I put that in qoutes as that is law under No Child Left Behind.
I would learn as much as you can about special Ed. Law so that you can protect and advocate for your son. A good book to learn from is Wrightslaw by Peter Wright.
I learned from this book and now I advocate for other children as well. Feel free to email me with questions. Special Ed law has become an area I know very well.
It just burns me up when school personell don't do the right thing for our children.


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Soma
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21 Oct 2005, 2:15 am

Though I may not be a parent, I'm quite young (15/8/91), yet I'd like to put a view forward. If it gets worse, speak to the principal of the school, or the Special Needs person, (if the school has one) and they may be able to take action. It's predjudiced and incredibly un-professional of the teacher, who has such a high position of power in your son's (and therefore yours) life, to be so stubborn and inconsiderate of your son's needs. If it gets worse, take further action. It can be hell for your son to be in such a dicey situation, and him being as sensitive as he is, this will only aggravate matters. The teacher should not even be in the classroom if she is as unprofessional as you describe. Hope I'm of help!

Regards, Soma.


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irishmic
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21 Oct 2005, 10:31 pm

Quote:
his regular classroom teacher was almost nasty with her opinions

unfortunately, it sounds like this teacher does not want to work constructively with you or your son. As a Special Ed. Teacher I can tell you that sadly some regular ed. teachers have zero interest in working with students with special needs, and can be quite nasty when forced too.

Fortunately, IDEA states that the student must be placed in the least restrictive environment.
It sounds like you and the resource teacher feel that a regular ed. classroom with supports is the best setting. Unfortunately, this teacher does not sound like a teacher that will provide these supports. So, you have to argue that the child needs to be in a regular ed. classroom with supports from a teacher who is content if not happy to provide them. If such a classroom does not exist at the home school, then the school district must pay to transport the student to a school where such an environment does exist.

If I were in your place I would do three things; consult an attourney well versed in IDEA, start documenting this teachers behaviour, and try to build a strong relationship with the school's principle.

When you have enough documented evidence of this teacher not providing the least restricted environment, I would demand an IEP meeting where you, your child, this resource teacher, and your attourney are present.

The principle will then more then likely be forced to reign in this teacher per school district orders. The teacher will probably not be too pleased about this, so keep documenting. The school district will more then likely not want to pay to have to transport your child if they don't have to. Be prepared for a long battle. You can get the services your son needs. Unfortunately you may have to fight for them.

On the bright side, parent's have a lot more rights today.
When my mother saw that the schools were not providing for my (Aspergers) needs in the early 70s she threatened to home school me. The School District told her that if she did, they would have her arrested. My mother has a Masters Degree from the University of Michigan. My father ended up running for and being elected to the School Board.



22 Oct 2005, 12:26 am

razorbackmom~I can only imagine how hard it must be to straddle two worlds. Basically diagnosis of anything is an vague ,imprecise guess at best.This is especailly so for Asperger's syndrome.The signs of Asperger's are not visible like use of wheel chair but invisble. Yet his behavior IS noticed.Not conspicous enough for people to shrug off( Oh he's just this label...) but still noticable enough for his peers and teachers to react unsympathtically.

It is very likely this teacher has no conception of what Asperger's is at all.You may find your self going up to bat for your son often.He will need this until he learns to know himself:What his strengths are ,and what his weaknesses are.

Above all trust in your judgement.Mothers are among the first people blamed if anything goes wrong in their child's life.You deserve more credit than you give yourself!



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23 Oct 2005, 8:00 pm

I'm not a parent, but I had a similar situation in second grade. The teacher at my elementary school didn't understand what I was like, what kinds of special accomodations I needed. Please do your son a favour and talk to the teacher directly about it. Kids cannot stand up for their own problems sometimes and need their parents help.

Another thing that might not have been brought up yet, but would it be easier to move him to a regular classroom with a different teacher? Maybe there is another teacher who understands a little bit more about AS or your son, or someone who would at least be willing to accomodate for him. If he's making really good grades, why not see if there is a gifted/talented program at his school? Having more challenging schoolwork (even if this is done in addition to his regular work at home) might offer an option to being bored in class.

You said you didn't want to "rock the boat", but if your son isn't getting a good education like he deserves, the boat needs to be rocked a little.


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Soma
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24 Oct 2005, 4:45 am

In short, what we're all saying is to confront the teacher. Good luck!


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