Friday, June 7, 2013

Another reason I don't like unions...

Missy's birth day and her 11th birthday

It's that time of year again.  ESY (Extended School Year) or summer school.  Remember how stressed out I was last year?  This summer we've got something new to stress about.

So, this past school year was awesome.  I was worried about the educational interpreter she would have.  Would they be willing to help her stay on task and put up with her myriad of off-topic questions?  Turns out I had absolutely nothing to worry about.  Her interpreter and her teacher have been amazing.  The classroom para-educators were helpful.  Her classmates have been perfect with her.  She has grown scholastically and socially in leaps and bounds.

The district only has one interpreter and she has been with a high school student this past school year (the same student she has been with since pre-school) so Missy's interpreter was contracted out from an agency. This high school student isn't attending ESY though so because of "seniority" the district interpreter wants to work with Missy for ESY.

Never mind the need for stability with an autistic student.  Her ESY school and teacher won't be the same from the regular school year which even more of a reason to keep the same interpreter.  Also, the district didn't even notify me of this change.  I found out through someone else.  The district wrote that off as an "oversight". 

Then there is the topic of transition.  When moving to a new para-educator and/or interpreter there is a required time to transition where the student has both of the aides with them.  The district didn't even offer this; I had to request it.  When pressed, they offered 1 day with the possibility of 2 if it was needed.  Missy isn't a typical deaf student.  There is more to her way of communicating than simply signing with her.  Two days is simply not sufficient time.  They essentially will be limiting her ability to communicate.  

The goal of ESY is for students not to regress during the summer.  Yet, limiting their ability to communicate seems like a fast way to regress.

I've repeatedly asked for more transition time, but with a 20-day ESY the district is adamant that their interpreter is "capable."  To compound the situation, the district is looking to hire 4 more interpreters for the 2013-14 school year.  So, if they actually find anyone (interpreters are hard to come by in this area), then we will have to start the process all over again.  Why not at least keep her current interpreter for ESY and allow for a transition time in the fall if they hire someone?

I'm afraid we might be at a standstill.  Anyone out there have experience in this type of situation?
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Gratitude Journal May 7:  I love that social media allows me to stay in touch with old friends and make awesome new friends.

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1 comment:

Matt and Brianna said...

First off, I have to LOL at your little comment right above!! Yesssss! And second of all, have you ever talked to a lawyer? I have a friend here who ended up taking DDD to court and won. But I know the school district is different, but they also have an obligation to give her the best education. If she's set up to fail, or at least not progress, seems like there's got to be something done!!! Good luck friend. I don't envy this situation at all!! We will be praying for you!!

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