Friday, March 21, 2008

School news

Very busy lately. We just held the followup IEP meeting, which I was expecting to be fairly brief and a profitable discussion of why Stephen's placement went down in flames, with ideas where to go from here.

Well, it was a profitable discussion of all these things, and our advocate, Carrie Watts, did a great job. We got discussed all the things we should have done in the initial meeting in January. We were at it four hours, from 1 to 5 until they closed the building. It's like they didn't hear a word we said, like explaining dynamic address translation to our cat. But it's all on the tape.

I'm sure glad the advocate was there; she made all the difference. We met Jeff Morris too, and Brenda Walker from CVUSD, and Ann Savage from West End SELPA. Jean Martin put in an appearance too. Heather Williams and the others were present indirectly through the Soviet prosecutor's black telephone - they did not make a personal appearance, but outside the meeting made known their will to others to deny us what Stephen needs. The law is that these matters are to be determined by the IEP Team in the meeting, not outside on the phone with bureaucrats not even attending the meeting, but we're getting used to what these folks think of the law!

Our homework is for Stephen and me to sit with Laura at Keystone to work on some goals that he was needed for, but which he wasn't available for before, while Carrie writes a letter for me to review Monday.

Joshua is on his way to an IEP in May, a story that began yesterday, but which I can't now go into in detail. It was cool that he prayed just the day before about some help for some problems, and, however inelegantly, that help arrived the next day. This is going very peacefully so far, in contrast to Stephen, but we shall see how that unfolds in future. He left for Paris for a week with a whole bunch of other students this morning, returning about 3:30 PM Saturday the 29th.

Yesterday, I sent to all the State Senators and Assembly Members on the respective Education Committees, plus the Assembly Judiciary Chairman, Dave Jones, an explanation of how the California Education Code falls short of Federal law in protecting kids with disabilities, with appropriate documentation to support the changes needed. It has been the Legislature's intention to make California law conform to the Federal law, and it doesn't, so they may want to do something about that. We will see what happens. Maybe nothing, maybe something, but it's worth a try. They're in recess until the 24th, so I certainly expect nothing for now.

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