Monday, March 09, 2009

Another Day, Another Trip to the School to Retrieve My Child

Let's see, some of the past 24 hours.

Daylight savings time messed up my sleep cycle (which is getting better). I get to sleep at 3:00am.

At 6:45am, Chef Jr climbs into bed because he had a nightmare that his bed was shaking. He doesn't believe me that it's almost time to get up for school because it's DARK outside. I had to explain the daylight savings time thing.

7:30am, Gameboy is awake and eats a huge bowl of cereal, then asks for another. In his mind, he normally has two bowls-kid bowls. He whines and complains, but no more cereal.

8:05am, he leaves for the bus and I head back to bed. About 15 minutes later, I go back to sleep.

9:15am, my cell phone rings. Screw it, I am NOT answering it-they can wait. Then Ed's cell phone rings and we realize that crap, that must be the school. Then mine rings again. Double crap.

9:20am, I am on the phone with Ms. B, the Assistant Principal. Gameboy again freaked out and ran out of the classroom to go to the media center. His teacher gets him back in the class, but she calls for help. Ms. B heads over to the class and arrives just as Gameboy runs out again, with his teacher running after him. They grab him and restrain him, because he was about to run out into the path of a delivery truck driving by. It was difficult for them to do this and Ms. B complains to me on the phone of how holding my son back caused her to be injured.

At this point, I go off:
1. We told you when we enrolled my son that he should not have X, Y and Z and your staff did everything we told you not to do.
2. We warned you what would happen if you did these things. Now that they are happening, you're complaining how difficult my son is to control.
3. We requested a small class setting and spelled out WHY, yet we were told that his diagnoses did not meet the criteria.
4. I requested from the Principal and all the teachers that I interacted with in the last two weeks documentation detailing these incidents for me to provide with his psychiatrist.
The only thing that arrived was a candy coated "Gameboy complains of his peers bullying him when this isn't happening" from the ESE coordinator-who doesn't have daily interaction with him, thus she does not have the ability to comment on specific incidents.
5. His Abilify was the only thing changed at that appointment and without insurance, I'm not about to shell out another $76.00 for a visit to the psychiatrist. I would have gladly presented their information to her. I was frustrated, especially since I told them well before his appointment AND followed up with the principal on this request two days before the appointment.
6. The behavior they usually get at the school is far better than we get at home, I'm at my wits end and ready to sign him over to residential placement because we are NOT getting through to the child.

Off to the school Ed and I go. For two flippin' hours.

First, Ms. B sent us over to the ESE coordinator's office, because she had Gameboy. (He was being an angel for her, of course). She was confused because Ms. B made it seem like we HAD to come get him, but nothing had been communicated to her.

I thanked her for her email but told her it didn't help, because it was too candy coated. (and later apologized for being nasty about it, but I was really frustrated). She had received the same email that I'd sent to everyone else, yet she was the only one who had replied.

We spent about 15 minutes talking, and she could see that both of us were really worn out with repeating the same thing over and over, but not getting heard. She agreed with our demand of "if Ms B is telling us we need to collect our child, it NEEDS to be recorded as an out of school suspension." As an ESE student, once he has 10 in a year, the county and state have to get involved. (He's got 3 so far.)

Ms. B and Deputy L (the school resource officer) come over to the building and the four of us talk. Ms. B is going on about how Gameboy had been easier to control earlier in the year. We had to explain how they opened the Pandora's box and now that he KNOWS there is video game music accessible on the Internet, he's going to fixate on it all. day. long. Once again, I brought up that they gave crack to a crack addict, or a chocolate layer cake to a diabetic.

She asks how he is at home and what we can do to improve it, then her eyes bug out when we tell her he is HEAVILY medicated. (apparently, she didn't really delve too far into his file-the documentation is there), that they have no clue what a terror he is without meds. I show her the scar on my hand from carpal tunnel surgery. Surgery that might not have ever happened if not for a 4 year old in full meltdown mode in a mall that I had to DRAG from one end back to our car at the other end with an infant in my arms, all because he wanted a movie from FYE and I wasn't buying it.

We were assured that everyone involved would type up incident reports for us to give the psychiatrist. Then, she asked us to observe him in the classroom (he'd been removed from the classroom, but was going to be returned). Both Ed and I were looking at each other like 'what the hell is the point of this? We KNOW what's going to happen."

It did. Gameboy disrupted the class even more than he probably does because we were there. If Ms. E wasn't giving him the answer he wanted, he started whining across the room to us. Of the twenty minutes we observed, he took up 80% of the teacher's time with redirecting him or urging him to do the work he was refusing to do. This backed up what I've been saying to the school all along-that he needs a small, contained setting, because he's a detriment to the other student's ability to learn.

Twenty minutes later, we left and went to Ms. B's office and discussed his needs further. Within five minutes, he went into full scale meltdown in the classroom. He knew we were on campus and he wanted to leave, so he was doing whatever he could to get out. He won. By now, half the school day had passed and sending him out wouldn't count as an OSS, but a respite day. Somehow, it seemed like this was their goal all along.

At the classroom, the para met up with us (she knows Ed from working at the same place part time) and we talked for a bit. Ms. E had been told that she would be getting Gameboy all eight periods a day and was surprised when we said "Oh no, we're putting our foot down-he's disrupting your class too much. Other parents are complaining and we're using that to get him what he needs."

All in all, a frustrating and draining day. I don't know what else we can do now...

5 People talked back:

daysgoby said...

Oh hell, Suzanne. Hugs. Just hugs.

songbird's crazy world said...

I can't imagine....let's hope you and the school find the best way to help this kid.

Jientje said...

I hope so too. Take strength and courage. Sending you good vibes.

Blessings Abound said...

(((hugs))) I'll continue to pray for you. You're one strong woman!

Kim @ What's That Smell? said...

Wow...I am praying for your family.