Wednesday, November 05, 2008

Dear Noah.......I am finding out what I thought was the case IS the case......

I suspected last year you along with the rest of your class were not taught everything you needed to be taught. Especially in math. I expressed concerns about this to the staff and at your IEP meeting. The assured me you were doing well and gave test scores to show it. They said the same thing about your peers. However....I was concerned you and your class were not yet learning multiplication or division as it was on the LIST of things to learn in 3rd grade....and they kept giving one excuse or another for reasons you and the class would learn it "eventually"...but they were running out of time that year to do it.....or maybe we should just do it here at home (which I had already worked with you on some but figured since you were now attending school they were to teach you so I backed off from it a bit.

Big mistake.

Since enrolling you in the Ohio Virtual Academy and having you take their placement tests......I have found out you were required and should have been taught multiplication and division in THIRD GRADE! You did not do well on those portions of the 4th grade test because had only just touched the surface of multiplication before the school year was out last year and to date you had not yet even touched it in 4th grade! WHAT are they waiting on??? Same for the rest of your class. Same for cursive handwriting (which I remember learning back in first grade!)

I have been very upset about the way the school has failed you and your peers. I used to complain to them about dumbing down their curriculum......and just allowing you and others to GET BY. HOW long would this have gone on? How many years in a row would they have just passed you and your peers on through to the next grade making the next teacher responsible for playing catch up and teaching you and your peers all the things the former grade's teacher did not?

I don't get that. I know it happens. I was stunned to verify this as fact today.

There is no way I could ever re-enroll you in THIS district's school knowing this. I never felt confident you were being taught all you COULD be taught....and now I have proof it was not happening. And worse.....I was told by that staff that you had been taught all you needed to be taught during the 3rd grade. You and your peers were cheated as I suspected. I can only imagine all you could have learned and been taught if in the correct environment or even just here at home with me again as your teacher.

Now I know why the teachers did not like me checking on what they were (or were not) doing!

So we will press forward. We are already working on some things for school here at home. I have to get this room reorganized still....working full time and getting all the enrollment process finished up leaves me little time to do it...but it will happen. Meanwhile we are working on things to slowly prepare you for a routine here at home.

I will pray for God to give me the strength and wisdom to help you learn all you can and for you to be receptive! Here is to a great 4th grade year Noah!!

I love you!



Old Lady Lincoln said...

Hoping his fourth grade turns out well for him. I know you can do it. But I will still pray that it is something you and he can handle.
Love you both

Wanda said...

Hi Noah and Melinda.... You are right to keep track of what the school does and does not do.

My daughter is very good to know what goes on at her Children's schools.

I know we live in a technical age, but old fashioned "flash cards" were helpful to my kids learning math concepts.

Lots of love and prayers.

Anonymous said...

Wow, here in California, they start teaching multipcation and division in second grade!!!! That's horrible that they aren't teaching the things they should in that district!

Lora said...

As far as I can tell Melinda, you are a very strong woman and a diligent mom to Noah so I think that everything is going to turn out for the best. You have had to make some tough decisions and now you are following through and making things work out because nobody can do it better than YOU! Hang in there and just keep being the awesome mommy that you are and it will all be just fine.

I understand the disappointment and the frustration having been there myself with the school so now all I can do is to turn it all around and start things fresh and just try to catch up with where he is supposed to be academically.

You have my support, write to me anytime you need to vent or whatever.........okay?