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School Problems:
“My child is being left behind.”

Dear Annie,

My son is suppose to be receiving special ed. help for his learning disability. But every year since the testing his grades are lower grades. When I ask him if any teachers are checking his work he replies the aid comes into the room and talks with the teacher but she doesn't help him. When I question him about his grades he is under the impression that he is earning B's or C's. But at the most recent school conference I just discovered that his grades are all F's. When I asked if he was getting help with his class work, his counselor said yes.

How can he be getting help if his scores are all F's? And what about the Law concerning No Child Left Behind? They say my son has missed a lot of homework, but when I question him about his homework he says he doesn't have any. He is forgetful due to his learning disability, so why aren't they helping him? Who is my child's advocate that meets with the school and review what needs to be done and what is not being done and what should be done so that the student is not left behind?

Frustrated Mom

Dear Frustrated Mom,

I'm very sorry that your child's school is not being responsive to his educational needs. I admire the fact that you are doing your best to make sure that he is not "left behind." Since you have spoken with his counselor and still have unanswered questions, my advice is for you to go and speak face to face with his counselor again. Make a list of the questions before you go:

  1. My son says he is NOT helped by the aide who comes into the room. But you say that he is. Either he is being helped in class or he isn't. I'd like to talk with the aide.
  2. If he is getting "all F's" then it is clear that he needs more help or a different kind of help. What would you suggest?
  3. What are the school's legal obligations to providing my son with a good education and helping him with his special needs?
  4. I never know until his grades are failing that there is a problem. How can we improve the communication between school and home?
  5. Who is my child's advocate that meets with the school and reviews what needs to be done? I want to meet with that advocate.
Keep fighting for your son! I hope this helps.

In friendship,

Annie

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