Missing so much time…

Hello to you kind souls who’ve read this blog in the past. I hope you will read this again, even though I disappeared for a while. I don’t know if I should apologize for being gone so long — I do not wish to flatter myself into thinking that what I write here matters all that much to anyone except my own twisty mind. But I have missed sharing my thoughts with others…

It is officially winter break, or Christmas break, or whatever your school district wishes to call it. I haven’t written anything since the beginning of the school year, and I think I have some good reasons. It’s been a . . . difficult semester.

Three and a half days into the first week of school, a student on my caseload was arrested on campus for serious threats to staff and students (like “I’m going to get my guns and come back and blow all your fucking heads off” and sexual violence types of threats). I didn’t even make it past my first week before I had to schedule a manifestation meeting, which are not my favorite kind of meetings, you know? For those of you who are not blessed [sarcasm] with the knowledge of educational lingo, a manifestation meeting is a meeting with many admin folks, teachers, parent, student, school psychologists, other education staff as needed (like speech-language pathologist, school counselors, and the like) meet to determine if the  serious behavior infraction is a manifestation of the student’s disability.

In my experience, the behavior is not a manifestation of the disability. Reading comprehension deficits do make most high school students scream and start throwing things. Usually. And emotional disturbance is a damned hard disability to determine — all sorts of tests must be conducted by the school psychologist and then the results are presented for a peer review by other school psychologists, and things like a Functional Behavioral Assessment and a behavioral intervention plan have had to have been in place and documentation that we followed it with fidelity has to be proven, but for inexplicable reasons, it didn’t work . . . it’s just not a common eligibility for students. (This particular student does not have ED, never has had ED.) Not that a student might not have a good reason for losing his or her mind during the school day and doing something stupid, dangerous, or crazy (sometimes teachers are really horrible, much as I hate to admit that, and life is really complicated and painful when a student is constantly being asked to do work that his or her disability makes almost impossible…). But if it’s not a manifestation of the designated academic IDEA-defined disability, then we (I) have to deal with things such as alternative placement and all sorts of time-consuming meetings, paperwork, and multiple sessions of crying on my laptop in frustration and sadness.

So, that was my first week of school, way back in mid-August. Did it get better or easier after that? No. I will get to that soon.

in the meantime, I love you and Merry Christmas. Yes, Christmas. I might be posting some Greek Orthodox Nativity hymns soon, just to break the pattern of my constantly writing about how much sadness is contained in the job that I love…


About mizmonk

Thinking about it. I am not my job, but I don't do much other than work, so . . . wait, what was the question again??
This entry was posted in Education and all that, I cry way too easily. Bookmark the permalink.

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