Great weekend … then … wham!

A rare occurrence, I got away this weekend! Time with friends and it was wonderful. What could be better? Pearlsky was home and well taken care of.

I started seeing a lot of emails coming from this blog, and noticed that many people were signing up for “new post” emails. Many as in a lot. So I looked at the blog statistics and things were insane. It turns out that AOL highlighted the article I wrote for the WhatToExpect website, it was on their home page. Over 117,000 people followed the link on AOL and read that article! And of that number, 20,000 came to this blog. So, welcome!

That was / is exciting. The short break was exciting. Then today happened! Welcome back to SingleDad.

This is the last week of the regular school year. We were told a few weeks ago that today and tomorrow, Friday, would be half days with a noon dismissal. Ok, we can deal, and made arrangements.

I come home from work yesterday, Wednesday, and there is a note on Pearlsky’s wheelchair from school.

Due to a recently updated school schedule, there has been a change to the release times for the last two days of school, June 27 and June 28. The final two days are still half days, but they will now end at 11 AM instead of 12 PM. Transportation services are already aware of the new release schedule for the last two days and will have [sic] pickup at 11 AM. We apologize for the late notice, but please contact us if you have any concerns.

Hmmm, any concerns? Three business hours notice? Concern? Moi?

I immediately shot an email to the Director of Special Ed …

Did the early release-time change for the entire school, just Pearlsky and her class, or otherwise?

but did not get an answer, I sent it in the early evening. I had no help arranged for Pearlsky at home until noon, it would have been very difficult for me to be here as well. Very not good. I asked if it was just her class because of the history with the school district, and a little thing called “illegal.”

First thing this morning, before Pearlsky was even on the van, I sent this email …

The district web site and Katie at the high school main office both say that school ends at noon today and tomorrow.

I expect Pearlsky will not be dismissed until noon time, contrary to what appears to be an arbitrary announcement from the classroom teachers.

Why is Pearlsky being treated differently than the rest of the students in the school district?

Father and Guardian of Pearlsky

That was sent to the Director of Special Ed, the teachers, the head of transportation for the district, and Pearlsky’s team leader. When I learn that the Director is out today, I send a copy to the Superintendent.

Again, why? I don’t have anyone at home for Pearlsky, most of the other parents are in the same boat, this is just simply wrong, and I am tired, very tired.

An hour into the school day, I get this from the Director of Special Ed:

I am out but I am taking care of this via phone with folks. Pearlsky will stay until 12:00 today and tomorrow.

Then her assistant calls me. He has proven to be a, um, less than competent person in the past. My first, very direct question to him was “Who authorized this change?” Silence. I repeated the question, and he said “me.” Yes, it was only Pearlsky’s classroom. No, he never gave a reason that made sense.

To the Director and Superintendent:

Once again, we are now at 100%, J has mishandled a situation involving my daughter. He has no idea that three business hours notice is NOT acceptable for randomly changing the time to send home the severely disabled students under his pervue. He obviously does not understand the concept that students in that classroom are not to be treated any differently than other students in the district, especially when it comes to things such as required school hours.

He called to take responsibility, and to apologize, but failed to understand why it was a problem and offered a reason that frankly did not make sense. Again, I resent how he interacts with me and my daughter.

As I did the beginning of the year, I request that he have no involvement in any decisions regarding Pearlsky. You can review our emails from the beginning of the year where his decisions and words were, well, not what they should have been.

And the response …

I agree this is not acceptable; I have spoken to everyone involved and, at this point, they all understand the impact of this situation.

Thank-you for your patience with us. I realize it’s a bit worn at this point.

Pearlsky is entitled to and will have the same length school day, until 12:00 today and tomorrow, as all of the district’s students.

Understand the impact? Treating these students differently only because they are disabled? Twenty families of disabled kids scrambling for a change in child care with less than a day’s notice? And then calling them all around 9:30 this morning to say “never mind.”


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