I hate confrontation to the max. Sure, I can write a pointed email or fluently confess my feelings in a blog post, anyone can, but face to face combat does a number on my emotions. When I was a kid, I used to sing solos in church (you may snicker a little). The morning of the solo, my heart lost it’s rhythm and I entered a world of weak-knees and shaky insides. Face to face confrontation is exactly like that.
This past week, I had to get over my weak knees and shaky insides and schedule a face to face meeting with the Special Education Director (which actually didn’t end up happening, but will this coming week). Aside from the district not providing us with Judah’s therapy service records, I found out that the Occupational Therapist they just hired (to start on the 9th of November) is not even certified to work in the district. Therefore, she cannot legally treat children or even sit in on the IEP addendum meeting we had scheduled for tomorrow (obviously if the point of an IEP addendum meeting is to schedule make up occupational therapy services, this is no good).
The only reason I found that out was because I knew it was within my rights to ask for the IEP addendum meeting (thanks to advice). Had I not asked for the meeting and had Judah’s teacher not been on the ball about scheduling it, the school district would have kept it quiet. Since the OT was to start on the 9th, but hasn’t been able to, there will be 3 more weeks of added services to make up before she is certified. !!!
After digging into this issue at the beginning of the week, I also asked about the PT and was finally told that the school has not hired a Physical Therapist yet but that they appreciated our patience. !!! Friday I received the therapy service logs (after telling them I would file a complaint…which is definitely going to happen first thing Monday) with an explanation that the director had missed my email asking for them. side note: I emailed twice and asked verbally twice and was told “Yes, I’ll get those to you” but they never came.
Obviously, Judah did not receive any Occupational services all year and the PT logs show that Judah received direct services for only four weeks since the beginning of the Fall semester. Judah’s teacher says that the PT never even worked with Judah.
I realize there are issues surrounding the district’s inability to provide services in compliance with Judah’s IEP that go beyond what we are being told. Funding is low (something about the way things were filed with the state years ago…which is in the process of being rectified), agencies are providing unreliable therapists etc… but it comes down to this (again). Communication. If they would communicate openly with us, our trust in them to provide what our son needs would be in tact. It’s hard not to point fingers and lay blame with the special ed director or anyone else involved, but I know that it’s never just one thing or one person who’s maliciously holding out on Judah’s services.
That still doesn’t make it right. I’ve informed the school that we are no longer willing to wait for services and first thing tomorrow I will be filing a formal complaint. Judah is in great need of OT and PT services, anyone who is around him for two minutes realizes that, which is why this makes me so sad.
This week I’m pulling up my big girl panties and I’m going to meet with the director to discuss the issues at hand. I am really praying everything gets resolved one way or another because knowing that my son’s education is lacking and having to fight with the bureaucratic system full of deceit is doing a number on my emotions.
Obviously, I wish this hadn’t happened, but I’m glad I’m getting to know our rights better and learn how things work in the special education system. It’s eye opening, the gap that exists, and it’s making me want to bridge the gap somehow…not just for me but other parents as well.
And that is the end of the rant. (for now)