Monday, May 16, 2011

Battle Lines

For her
 4.24.11 park(84)
I would drop everything on my "to do" list and make her #1.
I'd lift her over obstacles if I could.
I'd toss on my boxing gloves and throw down in the ring.
I'd shed tears on behalf of her so she doesn't have to be sad.
I'd worry about the little, insignificant things so she doesn't know they exist.
I'd scream from the rooftops - megaphone in hand - her praises.
I'd pray daily, hourly, by the minute that she has sunshine in her life.
I'd call, cajole, convince those who would tell her "no."
I'd pave rocky roads, sandy surfaces, and weathered paths so her steps through life were easier.
4.9 (23)
For her, I do anything and everything.
Wouldn't you?
 4.22 (52)
Right now I've sounded my war cry.  The mailbox - a Pandora's box of ill and sorrow - contained rejection: a denial of a humble request to keep my child at a school where she is thriving. 
4.9 (girl time)
I've researched the school Chi is set to attend (her "base" school based on residency boundaries).  It's perfectly okay for someone's child, but not for mine.  She's successful, comfortable, and attached to the school she's been at for three years.  However, because I initiated a transfer to that school when she began First Grade (and every year since), she's not guaranteed admittance. Our beloved school - the one I and my brothers attended after arriving here in 1987 - no longer has space for my child.  It is suffering from overcrowding due to irresponsible building of housing (as in apartments on every plot of land). 

I get it. 
3.13 (pole play)
Basically, in order for my child to attend, some teacher will have the "burden" of an extra student.  It matters not that Chi - who once was a reluctant and struggling reader, who has been subjected to relentless bullying, and who is a sensitive soul - is now a straight-A student who is eager to learn, to participate, to contribute.  The school doesn't have a specialty program, at least not officially, so I can't make an appeal on that front.  However, because the now-retired principal was an educational force, there are programs and initiatives that are unique to the school (all of which Chi has directly benefitted from).
There are several issues I'm fighting about
  • our county requires responses to transfers be given to parents no later than April 30.  While our paper was signed with approval by required principals back in March, it was never filed.  The newly appointed principal crossed out the signatures and approval, marked the form denied and mailed in out on May 10.  We received it on May 12.
  • the deadline for appealing a school decision of transfer is May 17.  The deadline to apply for transfer to any other school in the county has passed.  This means that we are forced to consider private education to ensure Chi continues to have her needs met according to the standards I've come to expect. The only alternative is to accept her return to the base school and become a constant presence in her classroom.
  • the base school has 61.9 percent of its population classified as English Language Learners.  This number is overwhelming and the allocation of resources dedicated to serving the specific needs of ESOL students has to be massive if more than half of the students are guaranteed by law services.
  • while my request for transfer cited my child was flourishing at her present school and had a 3-year history (as a family, we have 23 years), the denial cited the availability of daycare at her base school as the major reason for rejection.
Sensitive child that she is, she is distraught over the quite-probable loss of connection with her school.  She has forged friendships with classmates and relationships with teachers and staff.  She's already acutely aware of rejection and suffers gravely at the perception of being excluded, unloved, and unwanted.  And it's her perception - not what is spoken, or even what is truth - that matters.

1 comment:

patty said...

oh my. i'm so sorry. i know you love your baby and hope that this has worked out to your benefit. will be praying for her.