The Tsunami Builds In Strength

If you have been following along with my journey, by now we all know when a child in Arizona has special needs, there must be a written individual educational plan (IEP) in place at the school the child attends. And, anyone of the IEP team members can call an IEP meeting at anytime to discuss issues that come up or to have an addendum added to the IEP. Shantel’s mobility instructor, Mr. P, called another IEP meeting to notify the team members I was not adhering to “his authority and expertise” because I refused to have Shantel walk the community alone, cross busy intersections alone or take a plane to Tucson and back alone.

When the meeting came to order, Mr. P, began trying to state all the issues he had with me. I listened up to the point where he told the whole team I was going to get Shantel killed. Then, I told him he didn’t have any “authority” over me or my child. I said he could make recommendations that I would consider, and weigh against my childs safety, but as long as I was Shantel’s mother, I would be the one making the final decisions about what she would or wouldn’t do and where she would or wouldn’t go. I told him I saw no reason why he couldn’t continue to work with Shantel to teach her the skills she needed to learn without sending her out alone yet.

Mr. P didn’t like that I challenged his practices and said if I didn’t agree to what he said needed to be done, perhaps I didn’t need his services. I told him he was right, we would no longer needed his services. I said I would be working with Shantel to practice the skills  she already learned until Shantel let me know she was comfortable to move forward with more sessions. I said when Shantel let me know she was ready , I would notify the IEP team, and if Mr. P was still interested in working with Shantel, and I as her MOTHER, we would negotiate the plan at that time. That ended this meeting.

In addition to the mobility instructor, Mr. P, Shantel also had a full-time braille specialist, Mr B. His job was to ensure all printed materials, i.e. teacher handouts, books, power points etc. were delivered in braille to Shantel at the same time her sighted peer received their printed materials. Mr. B was very nice but was not assertive enough to enforce his own rules of having all Shantel’s teachers turn in any printed work needing to be brailled at least three days before it was due to be delivered to Shantel’s. As a result, teachers would forget to get the handouts brailled and Shantel would not have her work at the same time as her sighted peers. This is what brought the Tsunami crashing in with full force.

Next: Tsunami Hits!

2 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. gotham girl
    Mar 16, 2012 @ 19:59:52

    This Mr. P is a fruit cake and Mr. B is a wilted flower. Both living under rocks. Thank God for you missy! xoxoxo


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