So that post from yesterday got a lot of attention. I have many comments (mostly private emails). And there are two themes in most of the comments.
1. People who understand and completely relate. I'm truly sad that many people understand what I'm talking about because it means they have experienced it. So for all of you ... I am truly, truly sorry for what you and your children have/are going through.
2. People who think I should homeschool Zoe.
This one needs a bit of explanation. I forget that people are reading this blog who don't know us or our situation or background. (I forgot that as I wrote this.) So for those who know us, this is repetition. For those newbies ... here goes.
I was homeschooled. I currently am homeschooling some of the children. For next year, we are looking at placements in private, public, charter and homeschool for the kids. We believe different kids need different solutions. And different years there are different needs. So we don't see them as a lump or as one solution fits all kids.
Therefore, I would tell you ... we believe in the merits of ALL of these schooling options.
So for those who have offered to help us get started homeschooling, that's really sweet ... I've been doing it for a decade with kids. And personally for almost my whole life. I know the local homeschooling options, understand curriculum development and have many, many resources at my fingertips.
Secondly, I have taught in several different types of schools ... everything from preschool to graduate school. I was certified as a teacher. etc etc.
So rest assured. We didn't stick Zoe into public school lightly. We feel this is the best placement for her for numerous reasons. I still believe this to be true. We are, however, having issues with her teacher. There's a misfit. We've noticed it for a while. It's now become time to take care of it. Thursday, we'll be meeting with the teacher, the principal, the guidance counselor and the speech therapist.
Thanks for all the suggestions.
What I was doing was expressing the concern that many people have for their children... and that is ... when children are "different" ... it hurts. There truly IS no bandaid for this. No easy fix.
Today, she had another rough day. She and two little boys were seeing how hard they could punch each other on the playground. Is this acceptable? Of course not. I reminded her of the rules and told her she shouldn't have been playing this game. But what happened? SHE got in trouble. They did not.
Why? Because she is scared of this teacher and didn't tell her what was going on. The teacher only saw Zoe punch this other kid. (She has NEVER played this game at home ... she said it was the boys' idea to play this.) Zoe didn't even bother trying to say her side of the story. She just ran her laps. In fact, the teacher said, 'Run a lap for me'. And when Zoe was telling me this, she said, "But I decided to run 3 laps for her." Somehow she thought she was helping the teacher... she didn't understand that was the punishment for punching the boy.
I asked Zoe today what she would like the teacher to know. She said, "Sometimes she says she is not mad at me but I know she is because she yells in my ear. She says things that I don't understand. She yells too loud and it hurts my ears."
We are going to the meeting to hear what the teacher's point of view is. I want to hear everything she has to say. I have VERY little I want to say to the teacher. After she says all she wants to say, we can then make up our minds about what will happen.
We know we have many options. One is for the teacher to understand Zoe and her point of view. That would be our favorite choice. But we also can move her from her classroom. And of course we can remove her from school. By state law, she doesn't even HAVE to be in school this year. So we know the power is in our hands.
My concern is only for Zoe and her well being. And right now, I don't know what the best decision is. There are missing pieces of the puzzle. We're hoping that we will see things clearly after the meeting on Thursday.
So thanks for the comments, emails, calls and suggestions. What I'd love is prayer for wisdom on how to help this little girl ... not just in Kindergarten, but in her heart. For life.