I wish many more parents of students with severe disabilities would call school districts, boards of education, or whomever to account for educational programs not being followed; particularly for students with developmental disabilities.
Monday, October 14, 2013
A young man attempts self advocacy
The attached video below is an attempt by a young man to advocate for himself relative to his frustration that his IEP objectives were not being addressed by his teacher in his classroom.
The Northport Dispatch (October 11, 2013) states,
"The Northport-East Northport Board of Education cut off a 14-year-old boy from speaking during Monday's meeting when the teen, who has a form of high-functioning autism, attempted to express what he felt was unfair treatment in his classroom due to his disability.
Christian Ranieri held back tears as he left the room after being shut down just a few sentences into his speech, in which he was asking the board to hear him out after he felt he was unfairly suspended for two days from school.
The school board president cited privacy laws in his reasoning for halting Ranieri's speech. The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act protects the privacy of student education records.
Ranieri, a freshman at Northport High School, explained that since the beginning of the school year, his individualized education program and behavior intervention plan have not been implemented. After four weeks without it, his parents called meetings with administrative staff members. When his behavior plan was put in place however, it was done incorrectly, Ranieri said, adding that he was refused when he asked to speak to his teacher outside of the classroom about the error. Out of frustration, he said that he raised his voice at the teacher and was suspended from school for two days for the outburst."
Here is the video of the presentation...
I love when people are emboldened like this to speak up for themselves. I have no idea about the specifics of this situation, whether channels wer followed or whatever. But what I see is a young man self identified as having developmental disabilities, something that takes courage to do. He tells the school board that his teacher is not implementing his IEP which also takes courage. They don't care. They tell him the channels to take, his parents indicate they have tried to follow those channels with no success. All they would have to say is that "We will look into this through the Supt. and he/she will get back to you in __ days." Instead, they shut him down.