my oldest daughter has asperger's syndrome - she suffered all through school with children bullying and tormenting her until she hit high school in a town where nobody knew her and could reinvent her personality. she quickly became an It Girl but still didn't graduate.
EVERY TERM i had to go into whichever school she was attending (she didn't attend the same school more than 2yrs in a row until she went to high school because of the problems) and tear a strip off at least one teacher. they would discipline her for "disrupting class" - SHE HAS TOURETTE'S, YOU J-----S!!!!! they would tell her off for not paying attention (HELLOOOOOO!!!! ADHD!!!! THE REAL DEAL!!!!) and so on. i asked one teacher on the third visit in to speak with her, "didn't you read her file?????"
the response? "i don't have time for that". it's not hard: it was stapled to the front cover of the folder! all she had to do was open it!
my second daughter, caitlin - every year from grade three on, i would go in and talk to them because i was worried. her reports were 100% NOT my daughter. they said she was lazy, lacked focus, unwilling to participate, did not follow instruction, etc, when my daughter was (and still is) the kindest, most biddable, and hard-working child i've ever encountered. i would specifically ask her NOT to do something because i knew she'd do it and then go above and beyond. ask her to wash the dishes meant the kitchen would be Mr Clean sparkling an hour later (unlike her lazy-arsed sister who needed to be nagged,. threatened, and outright tantrumed into picking her underwear up off the bathroom floor!).
every year, i told them "something is wrong" and every year they told me "nothing is wrong - you read too much. she just has to try harder". they said she was of average intelligence, so shouldn't be having so much trouble.
every morning, i forced that child onto the school bus in spite of tears, headaches, stomach cramps, vomiting, etc. once i made her go in her pajamas because she refused to get dressed (i did drive proper clothes to school so she could change but she flat-out refused to and spent the day in the principal's office as a result).
when she was in grade ten, the school (same one her sister went to) agreed to do a psycho-educational assessment and the result?
"oooooooooh, um.... yeah. about your daughter. [indrawn whistle] well... it seems her reading is post-doctorate level, art is university level, biology is grade 13 (now called OAC), her writing is grade 5, and her math is grade 4. oh... and she's gifted artistically and creatively and her IQ is genius level. sorry."
"really," i said. "so tell me: how is it she has grade 9 AND grade 10 english and math credits?"
the diagnoses was CAPD - central auditory processing disorder - and her program was severely modified. she could only take 3 subjects max per term; she couldn't take two similar subjects (ie, physics and math, or english and french, etc); and she was to be provided with a stimulus-free zone to write all tests and exams or use when she needed to concentrate. it took her an extra 2-1/2yrs but she did graduate high school.
so now i have my youngest daughter, not even finished JK. every morning it's a fight to get her on the bus. every morning she cries her eyes out. in february, i asked for a teacher interview - nobody got back to me. she missed rather a lot of school - but no work was sent home (yes, her school sends homework every week, because naturally i have all the time in the world to do their job for them). the teacher said she missed "a stack THIS THICK" of homework and worksheets. i said why is this the first i'm hearing of it? oh, they don't bother to send anything home with her anymore because she leaves it all over the school - i said it's not hard to pick up the phone and tell me to come and get it - i live a 10min walk away! "we don't have time for that"
REALLY!? 23 children in the class. TWO teachers. TWO supply teachers. that's FOUR staff for 23 children and they can't pick up a phone!??
she is reading - she can read any simple reader book - but she won't do it in class. she comes home crying at least 2 - 3 times a week bec one of the other kids has hurt her or bec the teacher's mad at her. she says she hates school because everybody's always mad at her for doing everything wrong all the time.
i finally spoke with the teacher yesterday./ she was visibly stressed talking about saari and the way she looked at her, i have the distinct impression that she doesn't even like my daughter even though her mouth is saying such nice things about how cheerful saari is (i can't see that for myself - we're not allowed to drop in at the classroom unless it's by appt or for a specific function; i'm not even allowed to stand in the parking lot and watch her playing with the other kids to see what is going on - so now i'm stuck with a "he said she said" situation).
and i'm hearing it again: "she doesn't pay attention" "she lacks focus" "she's not even interested" "she doesn't follow the assignment" when that is NOT what i see at home. at home, saari reads. she goes on the computer and can find *anything* she wants on netflix or youtube. she's found kid's sites and games that i didn't even know existed. she plays neopets - found it, asked me to set up her account, and now plays it all by herself.
and here's this teacher telling me she's behind all the other kids?
i've called saari's developmental specialist and the agency that works with kids like her but nobody's gotten back to me.
i'm ready to pull her out of school entirely - they expect her to be at a LEVEL FIVE reading ability before grade one!????
wtf!???? i remember grade one: we learned the frikkin alphabet song!
but if i home-school her, i have to seriously reconsider my job - my boss is okay with her being there the last hour before closing but all day? and i don't know if saari will be able to behave that long. if i get a sitter, i might as well not work bec by the time i take the $10/hr (minimum wage) that sitters want around here, i have nothing left. my other option would be to find enough jobs that i'm working full-time because then it would "only" be $150/wk (if i supply the meals).
and JUST to add insult to injury?
the local health store has stopped carrying my meal replacement shake claiming there is an industry-wide whey shortage but they do have this other stuff they just got in that's twice the price.
and that tree still hasn't come down and whatever-he-is-today is being a jerk - all i want is to tie a rope from the tree to the car, have another rope off at 90degr for me to hold, then use the car to tug the tree past the branches it's tangled in and use my guide rope to make sure it doesn't hit anything on the way down.
but apparently that's just unreasonable.
omg, my day sucks so bad.
put it this way - it's so bad, i don't even WANT to eat.