ARGGGG. ARGGG. That’s really all I have to say. Ms. AP called. “Let’s look forward, not back.” REALLY? After five known injuries?
This went out to the AP, and I copied my advocate, members of the school board, and the local media….
Dear Ms. AP,
Thank you for your phone call today.
As we discussed, my son Movie Boy, a child with autism, has been injured at school on at least FIVE occasions in the last year and a half.
The last two incidents were in the last 10 days – both in the cafeteria environment – where he was punched in the stomach last Monday (11/30/09) and sustained a blow to the head yesterday (12/7/09). After last week’s incident you told me you would take special precautions to make sure he was safe in the cafeteria. Clearly those precautions were ineffective.
This is a shameful pattern, and needs to be remedied. My child is an honor roll student with good attendance and positive behavior marks in all of his classes. He is interested in learning and is diligent in his work. He should feel safe in your school, but does not. I have expressed my concerns over and over again that due to his disability, he is the target of bullying. His concerns, and mine, are legitimate but are continually dismissed.
All the adults in his school environment are accountable for his safety. I am growing weary of hearing “that is above my pay grade” or “we only have the staff the school district gives us” or “boys will be boys” and other rhetoric. Someone needs to take ownership of student safety.
Today, I asked you how many children and adults were in the cafeteria. You told me there are 400 students and only 3 adults. I asked you if this met lawful ratios, and your answer was “this is standard”. Your answer was evasive and unclear.
FIVE INJURIES, and my son is not even half way through middle school. How do you intend to break this pattern??
You suggested we look forward and move on from here. That is not good enough. We need to assess why this child (or any child) has endured a pattern of abuse in your school. I will not look past what has happened to him thus far, and demand that you do not either.
Again, I ask that you please let me know your plan to keep my child safe in your school.