Instead of doing a reader’s question today, I’m really hoping that you will forgive me and allow me to tell you about what has been going on in my life. I’ll explain why it’s been so hectic and why I’ve been so behind.
I was married to Gracie’s Dad for 18 years before he passed away. Gracie was 11 when he died. We started asking for a dyslexia test when she was in 1st grade. All of her alphabet and her numbers were backwards. Don (Gracie’s Dad) had dyslexia, his was only with numbers. I handled the checkbook. I was a straight A student. I didn’t understand any of this at all but I knew something was wrong. I was really worried about dyslexia. All of Don’s brothers had it too. We were told she was too young, all kids get everything backwards. I was a rule follower, they were educators and they knew what was best (or so I thought). I took their word.
We asked for a dyslexia test in second grade, we were blown off again. We struggled. We would spend all night studying for the spelling tests at the end of the week and just doing the nightly homework. The same thing in 3rd grade happened. This year though, Don’s back became worse and my concern transferred to him more. We were so worried about him.
He died right before 4th grade began. So, I didn’t ask for a dyslexia test. She cried every night during homework and spelling but honestly I did believe it had a lot to do with Don and both of our nerves. In 5th and 6th grade, we were still grieving. It was such a hard loss on us. We went to counseling twice per week, in school and out. Both of us. We struggled. No teacher suggested the test even though her alphabet was still backwards and she could do math any better than a first grader.
Seventh grade came and our house burned that summer. We couldn’t win for losing. We were still trying to get our life back together and get into a home with our dogs. Our life was once again in turmoil. Again, my fault, due to life circumstances, I didn’t request a test.
Eighth grade (this year), I found out it is a state law that the school is required to perform the testing. Guess what? They don’t want to. First their excuse, they’ve never tested a high school student. Next excuse, she’s lazy. Next excuse, it’s because you remarried. Finally, this woman (me the ultimate rule follower) threw a hissy and the test was done. I called the Arkansas Dept. of Education. I mean I did everything. Mama Bear hit hard.
The test comes back, they don’t want to give me the results. The principal gives it to me but the superintendent says that they haven’t gotten it yet and the skeener (sp) would call me when she did received it. I then said, that’s not true, the principal just gave it to me. So, I was given a meeting to go over the testing. She is severely dyslexic. They have to come up with an IEP plan. One of the points the teachers were to follow was all notes were to be typed and given to her. They don’t do that. Imagine that. I have to fight for that. Then they say they won’t grade her for that, but how is she supposed to study? I was told Gracie was the ONLY one they have this problem for in high school. They just won’t test the ones that need to be tested in my opinion.
Well, after I have to do all my “fighting” for her because they turned me into the Mama Bear. She is turned into a target. I am called over dressed code violations. Gracie dresses more modestly than I do. They hold her in the principal’s office for 4 hours saying she wrote something nasty on the bathroom wall. Not only do I know that Gracie would not do this, she knows that I would would get her for this. She’s too timid. While they HELD her there, the original person who did the writing, did it again. They let Gracie go to lunch and when they did, she went up to the principal and said MR. so & so, they wrote on the wall again. She took them to the bathroom and he confirmed it was the same writing. No apology, nothing. She begged them to call me three times and she was never allowed to. Four hours, she was held in a room with a principal an asst. principal. Not right at all.
During the interrogation, she would answer no sir and yes sir. They said she was being sarcastic. She said no, my Mom and Michael told me that I always show respect by no sir and yes sir, no matter what situation I’m in. They told me that after everything was over, it would be better for me if I showed respect, no matter the situation, even if I was wrong. They still said she was being sarcastic.
Now, Gracie was given free braces after Don died, it was a scholarship program and the only request from the dentist was that she pay it forward. We were so excited because she honestly NEEDED her braces, her teeth were so bad. When Don died though, we lost all insurance and AR kids B didn’t pay for braces at that time. I just didn’t have the money. This was such a blessing to us. Such a blessing. Her pay it forward was to work with the special needs program at school. She grew to love it and discovered she wanted to be a special needs teacher. The skeener (sp) is over the special needs room and has banned her from the room. That was my final straw.
I have pulled her from school and am now home schooling. Schools get paid for each student and they get paid for more with special “needs”. Even though Gracie isn’t exactly special needs, she does have a problem that requires special attention that they have to do special things for. This has put added work on my home life, even though I was having to stay on the school. Now, I’m doing all the schooling. This is a case of the administration being the bully.
Gracie is a good girl, if she had the testing done in 1st grade when we first requested it. She wouldn’t hate school like she does. She might even like to read like I do, who knows! So, all of you that pray, pray for us. If I don’t answer your e-mail right away, please forgive me. I’m a nut right now.
Please know, I have the BEST readers and I love you all!