Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Tuesday Open Thread

Yesterday, Google and Mayor Murray surprised Highland Park Elementary with a major announcement about their request via DonorsChoose.org. Google "flash-funded" classroom requests from every teacher in King, Pierce and Snohomish counties who had made a request at DonorsChoose.  From Seattle.gov:

Google donated $338,000 for 388 projects resulting in 295 teachers receiving materials for over 36,000 students. - See more at: http://murray.seattle.gov/google-highland-park/#sthash.5JaQd8iB.OIwpVLVw.dpuf
Mayor Murray joined representatives from Google today to announce that the company has fully funded classroom requests from every teacher in King, Pierce, and Snohomish Counties on the education crowd funding site DonorsChoose.org. Google donated $338,000 for 388 projects resulting in 295 teachers receiving materials for over 36,000 students.
“There’s no better way to start off the school year than with this surprise funding for our local teachers. This generous donation to our classrooms is greatly appreciated,” said Murray, who made the surprise announcement in front of teachers at Highland Park Elementary School.
- See more at: http://murray.seattle.gov/google-highland-park/#sthash.5JaQd8iB.OIwpVLVw.dpuf
Google donated $338,000 for 388 projects resulting in 295 teachers receiving materials for over 36,000 students.
Mayor Murray joined representatives from Google today to announce that the company has fully funded classroom requests from every teacher in King, Pierce, and Snohomish Counties on the education crowd funding site DonorsChoose.org. Google donated $338,000 for 388 projects resulting in 295 teachers receiving materials for over 36,000 students.
“There’s no better way to start off the school year than with this surprise funding for our local teachers. This generous donation to our classrooms is greatly appreciated,” said Murray, who made the surprise announcement in front of teachers at Highland Park Elementary School.
- See more at: http://murray.seattle.gov/google-highland-park/#sthash.5JaQd8iB.OIwpVLVw.dpuf
Mayor Murray joined representatives from Google today to announce that the company has fully funded classroom requests from every teacher in King, Pierce, and Snohomish Counties on the education crowd funding site DonorsChoose.org. Google donated $338,000 for 388 projects resulting in 295 teachers receiving materials for over 36,000 students.
“There’s no better way to start off the school year than with this surprise funding for our local teachers. This generous donation to our classrooms is greatly appreciated,” said Murray, who made the surprise announcement in front of teachers at Highland Park Elementary School.
- See more at: http://murray.seattle.gov/google-highland-park/#sthash.5JaQd8iB.OIwpVLVw.dpuf
Mayor Murray joined representatives from Google today to announce that the company has fully funded classroom requests from every teacher in King, Pierce, and Snohomish Counties on the education crowd funding site DonorsChoose.org. Google donated $338,000 for 388 projects resulting in 295 teachers receiving materials for over 36,000 students.
“There’s no better way to start off the school year than with this surprise funding for our local teachers. This generous donation to our classrooms is greatly appreciated,” said Murray, who made the surprise announcement in front of teachers at Highland Park Elementary School.
- See more at: http://murray.seattle.gov/google-highland-park/#sthash.5JaQd8iB.OIwpVLVw.dpuf

FYI, from CNN:

Travelers who passed through the Seattle-Tacoma International Airport earlier this month may have been exposed to the highly contagious measles virus, local health officials say.

The King County Department of Public Health in Washington state is investigating "a confirmed case of measles infection" in a traveler who was at the airport while he or she was contagious. The traveler was in the airport's North Satellite Terminal, on the interterminal train and at baggage claim between 8:10 p.m. and 11:30 p.m. on September 6.

"If you were at either of these locations during the times listed above and are not immune to measles, the most likely time you would become sick is between September 13th and September 27th," the health department said in a statement.

CPPS has a good overview of discipline rates in Seattle Schools (taken from OSPI data).   Not good - the majority of students were from low-income families, half were African-American, and "dozens" were K-1 students.  What I find odd was this stat:

Statewide, most suspensions and expulsions were for “other behavior” — not for fighting, bullying, weapons, or drug use.

Teachers, what would fall into "other behavior?"  Swearing? Oppositional behavior? Threatening behavior?  

What's on your mind?

49 comments:

Transparency Please said...

I'm becoming increasingly concerned about Ed Murray and his agenda for Seattle Public Schools. Murray is setting-up a department of education. Please read article by KPLU:

"Very rarely do I see a Department of Education with a sizeable staff created within the mayor's office" unless the city controls the local district or school board, said Brown University education professor Kenneth Wong, who tracks how municipalities and school districts interact."

http://kplu.org/post/how-seattles-involvement-education-unique-among-cities

It is worth noting that if the city's pre-k plan passes...Murray tends on hiring one administrator for every 50 students. I can't help but wonder if Murray is setting -up an administrative structure for mayoral control.

Anonymous said...

Can't be any worst than the last 10 years. You can continue to drink the cool aid or not, I have no glass!

I'm ready for the city to run the whole show, no more hobbyist!

Lost myvote

Transparency Please said...

In 2007, the Gates Funded- Center for Reinventing Education did work related to mayoral control of Seattle Public Schools. The Center for Reinventing Education is funded by Gates. As we know, Gates seeks to remove power from voters and consolidate power into the hands of a few.

http://files.eric.ed.gov/fulltext/ED501343.pdf

At the time, Seattle's business community ushered the Gang of 4. Since that time, Seattle's business community has not had the board of their liking. I suspect they are dusting off an old study and looing at the issue of mayoral control.

One thing is for certain: Murray carries water for the Gates Foundation. The Gates Foundation provides funding to push agendas.

It doesn't make sense for the city to staff one administrator for every 50 students. The city eventually wants to hire 60 individuals for their preschool program. Clearly, this does not make sense.

It can get worse, Lost myvote. Take a look t the cities that have mayoral control.

Anonymous said...

It appears Acelero, the for-profit replacing Head Start, is involved in Seattle's PreSchool for All Initiative 1B.

In fact, Ellen Frede, who has been selected by the City to lead the Initiative 1B effort, has direct ties to Acelero.

Seattle PreSchool for All Initiative 1B: Acelero, the fox watching over the hen house

Voting NO on Initiative 1B

Anonymous said...

Anonymous above. You have to sign your post or it will be deleted. Copying your message here:

It appears Acelero, the for-profit replacing Head Start, is involved in Seattle's PreSchool for All Initiative 1B.

In fact, Ellen Frede, who has been selected by the City to lead the Initiative 1B effort, has direct ties to Acelero.

Seattle PreSchool for All Initiative 1B: Acelero, the fox watching over the hen house

Voting NO on Initiative 1B

Reader

Melissa Westbrook said...

no more hobbyist!"

What does that mean?

Well, be careful what you wish for because if the City took over, you are at the mercy of ALL voters, not just ones who voted for SB. You will only vote for mayor and city council and you may not like the next mayor.

So to the issue of Acelero - what is weird is that the City hired Ellen Frede, who works for them, as one of their experts. Meanwhile, in Philadelphia, Acelero is being paid to revamp Head Start for that city. Why didn't Seattle consider doing this?

I'll have a complete outline of the many issues of the City plan (and why I don't support the union one, either).

Anonymous said...

WED, Sept 17. Garfield grad is organizing a rally for victims of sexual assault in Seattle schools and for accountability.

YOU FORGOT THE VICTIM, Hold the staff accountable would be possible placards.

Show the District that we are strong and demanding accountability.

https://www.facebook.com/events/613268448791156/

Peaceful Demonstration at SPS School Board Meeting
Tomorrow at 4:15pm
John Stanford Center, 2445 3rd Ave S, Seattle, WA 98134

Aviva

Anonymous said...

Most suspensions I see come from catchall discipline categories like "defiance of school authority."

Kent Teacher

Anonymous said...

Sorry-published comment before fully answering your question. The "defiance of school authority" category covers things like excessive swearing or rudeness, escalating minor situations into major ones that don't result in fights, being overly defiant or unruly, etc. These types of behaviors are far more common than fighting, overt bullying, or weapons. Though I don't personally believe they should result in suspensions very often, it makes sense that they make up the majority of suspensions because these behaviors are so prevalent and suspension is the tool most schools have to "deal" with these problems, ineffective though it may be.

Kent Teacher

Transparency Please said...


Very thoughtful article by Melissa. Thanks, Melissa!


http://www.seattlemet.com/news-and-profiles/publicola/articles/props1abwestbrook-september-2014

Anonymous said...

Google made a YouTube video about the Flash funding:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YSEo2_FSz5k

Googlenthemayor

Anonymous said...

Another week of no news of what is happening with the head SPED position. McWilliams - in or out?

Nyland showing up at a PTA meeting later this month is pro forma but no substitute for definitive information about the program's leadership and its future. SPS news should not be funneled through the PTA anyhow.

SPED Parent

Anonymous said...

I never saw Banda at a meeting, so this is good. Have you tried calling and asking what is going on? You are right SPS should not proxy their status update via the SpEd PTSA, however for years it seems the SpEd PTSA was the only group who cared what was going on with SPED. There are 7,000 IEP in SPS and only 9 or 10 people show up for the meetings.

Could you imagine 500-1000 people showing up at the meetings, that would send a message!

Go out a get 3 people to join the SpEd PTSA then come to the meetings.

New Sped

Melissa Westbrook said...

Sped, I'll ask today. (Can't guarantee I'll get an answer but I'll ask.)

Anonymous said...

New SPED - I don't want to start the back and forth that has devolved in other threads, but thank you for your invitation and know I have not just sat back.

I checked out both SPED PTA and SEAAC last year. I am sure the groups work for many, but they turned out not to be the way I want to spend my too short evening time. Some of my issues:

Focus on low incidence vs. high incidence disabilities. My family falls into the high incidence area. I understand why low incidence is a needed focus, but again not the best use of my time.

Tone of meetings. Working with my child's disability is stressful to me and the parents in the PTA and SEAAC meetings raised my level of stress, not lowered it. Again, I know that families have every reason to be angry, but I find it hard to articulate in the face of such obvious animosity between parents and staff.

Lack of information from either group: I know there's a SPED listserve, but I only see one or two 'in the know' posters and I don't really feel it is an inclusive environment or well rounded discussion.

I do participate in SPED-centered learning opportunities and support groups outside SPS, so again I am not sitting on my behind and complaining, but I thought it might be useful to explain why I look to SPS itself, as well as news organizations and this blog instead of the SPS-affiliated SPED groups for information.

Any official news from the district that can be dug up and distributed is much appreciated from my end. I am feeling very despairing of SPS's ability to work with my child. My student's special education teacher isn't much help either. She's new and understands SPS bureaucracy even less than I do. With no clarity even about who is heading the department I don't blame her.

SPED Parent

Anonymous said...

SPED Parent

I believe SEACC is a complete waste of time, I see hope in SpEd PTSA considering the new president has promised a more balanced approach on high incidence disabilities.

Keep in mind some are afraid of change or perceived threats to resources or focus away from their cause. I'm sure they would welcome your position and suggestions.

New Sped

Anonymous said...

SPED Parent,
Last year, we had two different meetings with speakers on SLD. (Virginia Berninger in December and Nicole Swedburg in April. I feel like this blog has been hijacked by one or two people who are intent on attacking the SPED PTSA and SEAAC with accusations that somehow they have been focused on "low incidence" diagnosis. The facts are that none of the meetings last year focused on any low-incident issues. My take is that the dysfunction of SPS SPED has rolled over into the parent groups. It is very hard to present anything about what is going on in the district when the district won't communicate, doesn't show up, or presents conflicting or innaccurate information. Last year, I had Zee McWilliams on the agenda as the primary speaker. She simply didn't show up and didn't even call in. Later in the year, when asked to present on transition issues, one of the supervisors gave out information which was innaccurate and had to be recalled in the next meeting. It was a very frustrating year, to say the least. I would agree that the tone at the meetings can get to be negative, but that is hardly surprising. Frankly, if you don't like it, why don't you show up and change it. Then you too, can experience all the joy and ego-tripping power of running a sped parent group.

spedster

Anonymous said...

Really Hijacked? I don't think so.

One just has to look at the position papers posted on the SEACC web site to see where their efforts where focused and that's is because no one representing SLD students was on the committee, it was stacked with people focused on other issues. Another violation of it's charter. It's not their fault, they took advantage of the situation.

Over all SEACC was not in compliance with it's own charter. I never heard a word about SLD except from myself at a SEACC meetings.

Yes the SpEd PTSA had both Dr Berninger and Swedburg present , are you going to take credit for that?

Are you going to still claim that SEACC and Sped PTSA genuinely made an effort when is comes to SLD issues? Majority rules right?

New Sped

Anonymous said...

My middle school child took the alternative assessment today. I was surprised to hear they took a grade level test when the class is supposed to be working 1-2 years ahead. I'm not sure how results are going to inform instruction.

The ELA test sounded like basic reading comprehension. It took one period and students got their results at the end of the test (on the computer screen).

meh

ben said...

I exercised my right to opt out of Amplify testing today.

Anonymous said...

Another week of no news of what is happening with the head SPED position. McWilliams - in or out?

She is out. Word is she is threatening suing the district and the board and it's lawyers are meeting tomorrow for further discussions.

SPS has hired a Employment lawyer named Jeff Freimund to deal with the mess.

PLP

Maureen said...

SPED Parent, Spedster or New Sped: Sorry to be so clueless, and I may have had this explained to me before, but can you please define SLD, SEACC, low incidence and high incidence (is that simply uncommon and common?) for me? Examples would e great. And Melissa, can you please add the definitions to your acronym list (which is great!). Thanks!

Melissa Westbrook said...

Good idea, Maureen. I'll wait for the answers.

Anonymous said...

Definition- Specific Learning Disability (SLD) means a disorder in one or more of the basic psychological processes involved in understanding or in using language, spoken or written, that may manifest itself in the imperfect ability to listen, think, speak, read, write, spell or do mathematical calculations, including conditions such as perceptual disabilities, brain injury, minimal brain dysfunction, dyslexia, and developmental aphasia.

The Special Education Advocacy & Advisory Council (SEAAC) is appointed by the Superintendent to advise him on issues related to Special Education. Members include parents, teachers, and community advocates. The council's goal is to collaborate with the district to achieve full membership for students with disabilities. You can download the official SEAAC Charter for more information.

SLD is considered high incident because about 15,000 students have dyslexia most unidentified.

Low incidence are pervasive issues like autism or other cognitive suppressive issues.

Hope this helps

New Sped

Mary Griffin said...

The definitions of High Incident disabilities and low incidence disabilities that some refer to seems to be changing, but I don't see any that exactly match the list that is given in the prior post. Almost all lists for high incidence includes EBD (emotional behavior disorder) and may also include ADHD (which falls under the health impaired category.) Because autism diagnosis is on the rise, it may also be included in high incidence category. Low incidence categories may include low vision, deafness, hard-of-hearing, deaf-blindness, significant developmental delay, complex health issues, serious physical impairment, and multiple disability.

In some districts, autism rates are in the teens--Bellevue's percentage of students with disabilities who have autism is 17%. The state-wide average is 8%. There is significant dis-proportionality in the racial diagnosis of autism vs. EBD, suggesting that white students may be diagnosed with autism while black students may be diagnosed with EBD.

Anonymous said...

Once again!

FTM aka New Sped! Wait no more, for information about how OTHER PEOPLE in advocacy organizations (SEAAC and sped_ptsa) have helped YOU, and more importantly YOUR CHILDREN. (Yes, position papers DO apply to you too. And you've always been free to participate.)

Everyone feels frustrated about the district's inability to respond to the community of special education families. Here are 3 things advocacy organizations have done for SLD's. Is it everything you would have done, if you had done anything at all?

If you had done anything at all, had a position, written anything up... well, we'd be adding it to the list. But no. You didn't do that. In fact, you did nothing. You let OTHER PEOPLE speak for YOU!

NEW SPED!!!!! SEAAC helping YOU! These particular items aren't about somebody else. No, no, no. It is about YOU and ALL YOU.

1) SEAAC's Financial Accountability paper documents district financing issues. Overwhelmingly, double dipping (teachers teaching general ed at the same time as resource room - but billing special ed) impacts students with dyslexia - since they are the ones losing services. Got that? Dyslexic kids are getting their money used for something else - SEAAC complains. The district does not raid self-contained programs and funding, because it wants those kids to stay in their holes. And as you have noticed - they gladly ship them off to out of district placements as well. Usually, it's more like this... district does absolutely nothing until they are sued, then they agree to an out of district placement for 1 kid - leaving everyone else in the same crappy setting, but removing their complaint. Evidently, this is more cost effective than delivering actual services.

2) SEAAC's complaints about late arriving classroom materials, and efforts to make Read 180 available in September instead of... oh January... Overwhelmingly failure to have materials (any of them) impacts students with dyslexia, since they are mostly, the students in Read180 programs. When the district failed to produce materials for Read 180, a widely "available" secondary class at middle and high schools, SEAAC complained about it. This year, those materials were available in September.

Hello!!!! NEW SPED. Read 180! That isn't something about those "pesky pervasives". No. These are ALL SLD's!!!!!! You know, kids like yours!

3) SEAAC's citizenship initiative - contains many recommendations that include students with dyslexia. Students with SLDs are the ones failing and getting bad grades in Language Arts, Math, etc and thereby are excluded from after school activities. (Students in self-contained classes - usually get all A's and breeze through grade checks. SLD's, not so much.)

Hello NEW SPED. Anybody home???? Do your kids get great grades? If so, that stuff above doesn't apply to you. BUT, if they're like most students with SLD's, their grades diminish their ability to participate in other things. Maybe not a big deal to you, but can't you at least concede that this is important to SOME poor suckers out there?????

Since you're so great at documents - you can probably find this in the Minutes from SEAAC and sped_ptsa.

These may not be the issues that you find most important. But, they are important to some people. Most importantly, they are important to the people who have bothered to articulate a position. Maybe you want a particular curriculum, a particular academic focus - SEAAC is always looking for people willing to write those positions. Maybe you're wanting to write a "compliance" paper. Great! Do it.


It's always a lot easier to complain about why people haven't done something.

Advocate

Anonymous said...

It is very hard to present anything about what is going on in the district when the district won't communicate, doesn't show up, or presents conflicting or innaccurate information. Last year, I had Zee McWilliams on the agenda as the primary speaker. She simply didn't show up and didn't even call in. Later in the year, when asked to present on transition issues, one of the supervisors gave out information which was innaccurate and had to be recalled in the next meeting. It was a very frustrating year, to say the least. I would agree that the tone at the meetings can get to be negative, but that is hardly surprising. Frankly, if you don't like it, why don't you show up and change it.

Amen Spedster!!! Really. The district sets the tone. And NEW_SPED. There isn't even a SEAAC - and you're complaining about members who are long gone. Ancient history. Seriously???


The fact remains. If you wanted something done - you need to do it. That is how it always has been. You think you can get a bunch of people to go to sped_ptsa meeting. Great! THen what? If you have a position, what is it? ????? We're all waiting. Is it curriculum? Is it a particular law that is being broken? Some practice you object to? Private school tuition? What exactly is your beef? And why isn't it a "position"?

-reader

mosfet said...

Kent teacher

Thank you for explaining the bit about the discipline categories!

Anonymous said...

Your wrong period I've see you in action...ZERO effect! So, keep the personal attacks coming it's fitting of your group. Did you get your magical brochure finished...hurry up it's the key to fixing everything.

For your information many people find the SEACC group abrasive and non-inclusive. I simply found regurgitating the same pervasive issues every month non productive. Whatever benefit you think might have trickled down to my students I have yet to see it. Any progress has come from my family persistence in fighting against the districts refusal to serve SLD students and not from one thing SEACC has done!

New SpEd

Anonymous said...

It's okay, new sped, all your attacks are magically making everything all better.

In regard to the description of what you do as hijacking, I would agree with you. It's not hijacking. Perhaps a phrase more like "magical serial trolling" would more accurately describe your behavior of flaming everyone except yourself using multiple screen names. It is truly magical how that works. So much has changed for the better. All the families of SPED students can sleep better at night knowing that you are attacking all the evil brown-nosing parents who are in cahoots with the district. YAY! THANK YOU SO MUCH, NEW SPED! You're my hero!

XOXO

Anonymous said...

Any progress has come from my family persistence in fighting against the districts refusal to serve SLD students and not from one thing SEACC has done!

Did you really think SPS was going to listen to SEAAC? Or anybody? Woweeee? You really thought you didn't have to self advocate? Is there a brochure? You mean the one the district is coming up with? You're really going to blame parents, for a district brochure that did or didn't get done? Seriously?

First you complain, oh Wahhhh. Nobody included my issues. Then, when presented evidence of advocacy and positions supporting your issues... you complain, oh Wahhhh Nobody listened to you and did anything.


Well big DUHHHH!;! they don't listen to anything other than a serious fight. That's true of everyone. Get over yourself.

Advocate

Anonymous said...

Describing SEACC as a "waste of time" is an attack?, your definition is flawed same as your argument.

Let me clarify, SEACC, a group composed of mostly white middle class parents who bring up diaper changing issues, use of restraints, door to door bus services on snow route days and some sort of brochure. Position papers that well just are not well written and never implemented year after year.

Some members privately communicate with directors pushing their agenda and making deals. Where the average parent gets an answering machine these parents get services. Yes I have proof!

SEACC a red herring and probably did more damage than any perceived good.

New Sped

Anonymous said...

The sad thing is parents actually thought SEACC could influence change and went to the meetings and listened to SPS staff blow smoke.

Me, I figured the situation out in 5 min. I only went because I was invited. I don't need SEACC or SpEd PTSA to help me. You have no idea what I do and who has alined with my cause. I can tell you I will bring change to the district on a large scale.

Enjoy the show.

New Sped

Anonymous said...

A messiah complex (also known as the Christ complex or savior complex) is a state of mind in which an individual holds a belief that they are, or are destined to become, a savior. The term "messiah complex" is not addressed in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM), but symptoms of the disorder closely resemble those found in individuals suffering from grandiose delusions (GD) or delusions of grandeur. This form of delusional belief is most often reported in patients suffering from bipolar disorder and schizophrenia. Little is known about the disorder, but it is believed that as many as 10% of the population may hold similar beliefs in one form or another, though not significant enough to warrant a diagnosis.[1] Examples include Examples include Jim Jones and David Koresh.[2]

XOXO

Anonymous said...

HaHa have another drink there CM.

Anonymous said...

Hahahah, if the robes fit, wear them.

I'm not CM.

Love you too,

XOXO

Melissa Westbrook said...

Okay, enough.

No more personal attacks. If you are unhappy with parent groups you can state that without attacking people. But this sniping - especially in an open thread - is off-putting.

Moving on.

Anonymous said...

Ok, but "magical serial trolling"? Hilarious!

Amused reader

Anonymous said...

Wow. New_SPed. You ARE catching on. Yes. If people communicate with directors, file complaints, write briefs - etc, they tend to get their issues resolved. Just like YOU! Isn't that what you're doing too? Glad you're learning the tricks of the trade. And absolutely, being the squeaky wheel works. And if you ever actually held an articulated position (other than "things are gonna change"), by golly, you'll need to write it up. And then your issue will be on the list with the others.

SEAAC has a compliance paper. Your issues can be included there too. WHat are they? ??????

Again. We all want to know. What exactly is it that you want? Hard to imagine you effectively advocating for your issues if you can't even spell out what they are.

Advocate

mirmac1 said...

I'm just sitting back enjoying the show : )

Greeny said...

Wish I could get popcorn for us, Mirmac, but...I'm too appalled, and I don't want to see anymore.

I was sincerely wanting to understand more of what SPED families are facing, and glad that someone asked for acronym definitions. But, I AM put-off now. Really, "the tone at the meetings can get negative" doesn't sound like it even captures it, judging from this uncivil bantering. Really, right now, rightly or wrongly, I feel that, if your (and I mean, ALL of your children) are not getting the services they need, and the program is a mess, well, I don't think you are helping - sadly, divided, I think you will get nowhere. And you know what? You've turned me off from helping, too, compassion though I have for your children. Good luck to you, sincerely, but I'm tuning out from all posts and causes SPED.

mirmac1 said...

Greenwoody,

I don't blame you. I'm tired of engaging this person and his multiple personalities myself. I'm just glad I am not the only one.

The rest of us just keep on keepin' on with trying to have a positive effect on special education in this district.

Anonymous said...

I'm not sure that the posting above that McWilliams is gone is truly an official notice, but I do appreciate, as I said yesterday, any information the authors of this blog, other press, or SPS itself can provide about the state of the program's direction this year.

As for the rest of the comments, which apparently come from both members of the SPED PTSA and SEAAC, as well as those who do not like the leaders of those groups, you have illustrated what I said yesterday. It feels far to stressful to me, as well as a number of other parents I know, to be involved with such vituperative personalities. I wish we had a more cohesive parent group within SPS. But it is clear to me that it is an unhealthy place - for me - to address my student's problems.

SPED Parent

mirmac1 said...

I understand what you're saying SPED parent. I've been told the reason McWilliams and Clancy did not come to meetings at times was because of a few individuals. Frankly I don't look forward to any future meetings with these few. The others are thoughtful volunteers.

Mary Griffin said...

I haven't been posting very much about SPED issues because invariably this year someone feels compelled to troll me.

I agree with the comment that the dysfunction of SPS SPED has rolled over into the support groups.

I got involved in SpEd PTSA because my son was being put into prone restraint while he was a third grader at B.F. Day by a very ignorant teacher and his staff. Since then, I have worked through the legislature and other groups to enact more legislation as well as get SPS to recognize the importance of staff developement around this issue. I would say that after almost five years of effort, I have had some effect and some benefit to other families. Frankly, I believe that depriving a student of oxygen should be a prime concern of mine and well deserving of action. I think most parents would agree.

The reason I say this is because the individual who trolls me puts me down and other parents down for our methods. He has persisted in attacking me and attacking other parents not just personally, but by threatening to disclose personally identifiable information about our children.

And that is what really rankles me. Leave my kid and other people's kids out of this. Through accidents of birth or chromosome, these kids are who they are. None of them are more or less deserving of getting services than others and NONE of them are deserving of this person's repugnant devaluing comments about the nature of their disabilities.

The nature of a blog which allows anonymous posts is to allow teacher and parents who may fear retaliation to post without fear; it is not for someone to sling mud at another human being through ignoble commenting about the disabilities of children.

SPED PARENT, consider this well: if you believe that you can help the situation in Seattle, please do feel welcome to come to meetings and discuss matters. If you believe that negativity is the answer, then please feel free to join the other individual in his further aexploits: but please don't join in him criticizing other parents.

Also: I will not respond to troll-like comments. I have other and better things to do with my time.

Anonymous said...

Reading along, I just had a thought. I look at the APP blog sometimes, which I think may have spun off from this blog? Maybe someone from the PTSA/SEAAC group could start a similar blog? Then those most interested and engaged in the SPED issues can spend time there, with of course the larger SPED topics also appearing here.

It seems like the initial SPED hopes of people on this blog have happened: staff and parents seem more aware that SPED is a problem.

Sometimes the APP bloggers and commenters go after each other there too, but at least it's more of a 'all in the family' discussion. Here, it seems as though things have devolved.

Even the above post by Griffin, who usually seems pretty reasoned, seems defensive...calling out SPED Parent for his/her own concerns about SPED communication. Maybe in a SPED blog which tackles the good/bad/ugly of the system AND the parent relationships - within the SPED 'family' per se would work better? Anyhow, just an idea. I'd read that blog too, but would just skim over the personality issues as part of the stressfulness of a community focused on a hard issue.

SavvyVoter

Anonymous said...

Mary you come across as delusional and hyper defensive. If SPS is spending $126,000 per year on one student you think it's an attack to find out the circumstances around why?

Why should one student use $126,000 per year when others get ZERO!

It's the LAW for SPS to document the justification.

There are other parents with students in similar situations EDB, but they are not getting the same level of services for their child, do you think this is a coincidence? Maybe, but SPS documents say otherwise. Same goes for your buddy. Is it wrong? maybe unjust absolutely. I'm not making up anything it's all well documented and its been known for years about the special treatment for team members Wink Wink. What your really angry about is that it's all being day-lighted and you are scared the district might cut services, like you have said many times or was that your buddy who threatened I was going to ruin it for everyone.

Why cant SPS teach the 14 students they send to NWSOIL at a cost of $907,000 per year and what about the one million dollars to overlake each year? and on and on.

"None of them are more or less deserving of getting services than others and NONE of them are deserving of this person's repugnant devaluing comments about the nature of their disabilities."

Please show me where I have threatened to disclose personal information. go on ..wait you mean your rage attack on the list serve where YOU disclosed more than anyone needed to know about your situation.

Again you are not being personally attacked, SPS is for is disproportionate spending on medical issues, NPA placements on pervasive issues while ignoring the students with dyslexia.

SEACC is a sudo political district entity and it's completely fair for anyone to openly criticize it.

Where you called out? NO SEACC was.If you can't take criticism sitting on a committee then maybe you should not be on one.

Please put away the sympathy card, We're tired of those tactics.

I know its not PC, sounds vile comes off as hate, but people just don't see why SPS has to spend millions of dollars on one student who will never reach a third grade level of education. Sure they deserve help I just don't think it should be SPS responsibility.

New Sped

ben said...

Unfortunately the nature of blogs with anonymous postings is that one unpleasant poster can make the tone ugly regardless of how one segregates the topics. Its probably just as easy to filter out the craziness here as it would be any where else and its convenient that the community here is relatively large and brings more perspectives. My sympathies go out to Mary Griffin. Bringing poster's children into the conversation is pretty despicable in my book.

Melissa Westbrook said...

We're ending this now.

I am disappointed that everyone seems to want to get in last words/shots.