My son’s IEP binder is thick. I take it deadly seriously and I expect my son’s school to take it seriously too. We have a lot riding on the document, including my child’s general health and mental welfare.
I gave a lot of grace to our school system in the early days of the Pandemic. I was happy to not worry about grades and testing. It made it somewhat easier to plow through. It wasn’t by any means easy.
So now we are preparing for the fall. Yet, I feel like I have no idea what choices there are to make. I don’t know anything about special education in the Virtual Academy or for Plan C. The problem is while typical families have a FAQ and are having robust Twitter conversations, we have mass confusion and no answers.
So, far the two official communications I’ve received from the Special Education Dept for Wake County Schools was a transportation survey, and a robocall/email detailing how many of us thought we were going to go back was incorrect.
For kids in a contained classroom like my son, families were initially told that our kids would remain in the classroom daily. Extra precautions would be taken, but since our specific population can’t do transitions, we wouldn’t have to worry about a rotation. On Tuesday evening, I learned this was false.
I was mad yes, but I was even madder the next day, because I didn’t know what my other options would look like. At the Open House for the Virtual Academy, the section on disability simply said they would uphold our IEP and deliver services. That’s the equivalent of saying the school won’t do anything illegal. That isn’t information.
I’m increasingly concerned that they don’t have a plan for us. I’m increasingly concerned that we are an afterthought. After we get general education figured out we’ll concentrate on things like special education and ESL (English as a Second Language). Relationships run deep with out students and teachers, but so far I don’t know how that will play out in Virtual Academy.
I can always choose what is now Plan B but will most likely be Plan C by Tuesday. It is more risky. I’m still not sure I know how services will be delivered, who will be delivering them or how my IEP will be managed. I do have a better chance of retaining the teacher. I think. I don’t actually know.
Look I know Wake County is huge in scope and size. I know this is all new. All the more reason Special Education Dept should be communicating with parents and their teachers. All the more reason to put special needs first. If we are more complicated, tackle it first and prioritize it.
Right now my Facebook page is full of promoted ads for private schools and education companies. These people know what they’re doing. I’m staying put in public education. I’m going to keep pounding on doors until I know what my options really look like for the fall semester. I’m a fighter. Not everyone is, nor should they have to be just to get some basic answers.