Professor Mom

Chronicles the life of a mom, teacher, and writer trying to stay sane amid the chaos of daily life.

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mouse's picture mouse

The biggest difference between public and private schools, at least for kids with need for extra support, is that private schools are not subject to the same legal requirements. They don't have to support IEPs, and in my experience, they will find a way to push out kids that just don't fit in. I'm sure some are exceptions and then there are some specifically catering to different challenges, but teaching in a private school showed me how most of them would not be a good place for E.


Omaha Mama's picture Omaha Mama

Your post made me CRY because man, do I care.


Omaha Mama's picture Omaha Mama

I had a young man in my class who wanted to belong, wanted so badly to join *something*. He's on the spectrum and honestly was one of my favorites, even though we teachers never have favorites, right? He blossomed so much his sophomore year and I walked him up to his first chess club meeting after school (his mom and I both terrified, I agreed to make sure he made it okay). Here he was, joining a club in a class A school of over 2,000 students!The boys in the club were exactly like you just described. Eclectic, quiet, and so promising. It ended up being such a great experience, I actually teared up walking back to my classroom. I was so proud of my student, I felt like a parent leaving her child for the first time!


Omaha Mama's picture Omaha Mama

Last year he performed in the talent show, something he had tried out for and not made the previous two years. He campaigned for student council and even though he did not win, it was a great experience. He's a senior this year and I'm a little heart broken just now, I was so excited to see him through his last year of high school. Sigh. I think I miss teaching!

(Sorry for the super long comment...guess I needed more than 10000 characters today!) It was a really great post today, so nicely written.


Aliki McElreath's picture Aliki McElreath

L.'s IEP has worked great for him all these years but this year I feel it's been a huge disadvantage for him. The problem is that I think it's clear that the 5th grade teachers are using his IEP as an excuse for not working more closely with him; not pushing him in encouraging ways and helping him succeed. It hasn't worked that way all these years but I do see that happening this year, and it's beyond frustrating. Of course, I can't imagine how school would be for him if he didn't have many things "protected" for him through the IEP. My feelings on it are pretty mixed right now.

Your story brought tears to MY eyes, Omaha--what an inspiring and hope-filled story.