Many of you don’t know how my struggle with the school system ruined a handful of years of my life. I remember the days when I would sit at meetings with teachers and administrators demanding they follow through on my sons accommodations so he had the chance to be successful at school. It’s all about the children, that’s what they say until something becomes inconvenient and then it’s a list of reasons why they cannot follow the accommodations your child so desperately needs. I was called a bully for fighting for my child and the top of the top threatened to cancel my sons 504 meetings. Imagine if I marched into the school lobby, the principals office or stood outside a classroom window holding a sign with my closest friends screaming “DO YOUR JOB!” What do you think the reaction would be then? Would teachers rally behind me for a common cause because you know, it IS about the children?
Don’t get me wrong. I have made peace with my own hell. It almost destroyed me but I realized that if the end goal was truly getting the help Chase needed, I had to take a different approach. I stopped demanding and started reaching out. How can we give Chase what he needs together? What is something that would work for all of us? Slowly and surely the teachers attitudes began to change. Today I am happy to report that this has been an amazing year because finally after fighting a hard battle, I finally got the type of teachers that Chase needed. They go above and beyond, not just for him but for all their students. I am so grateful for them. It was the state of Oklahoma and the teachers here that taught me a hard lesson. Making demands turns a deaf ear and makes people resist what you demand from them even more. This isn’t the way. I support their cause but I do not support their path to get there. There are two sides to every story and unfortunately the media chooses a side and that is the only story you will ever hear. This is the first time in years that the officials we elected did something positive for teachers. Is it really a surprise that they are resentful and angry that they are on the receiving end of demands and chants? Teachers lining the Capitol and chanting “Do Your Job” and “We Won’t Leave”. You bet they’re pissed because they worked long and hard to make this much progress. This situation is lose-lose for everyone. Maybe it’s time to rethink this plan and try again. Just a different perspective from the one you are hearing. Just my opinion but attacking the people who could give you what you want and humiliating them with words on signs is probably not going to work but then again, what do I know?