The public teacher in me is going to Raleigh for the rally to end class size chaos because I know the ramifications of what inaction will do to public schools.
The public school advocate in me is going because the power of fellow advocates coming together and acting collectively is greater than the sum of our individual parts.
But it’s the parent of two public school kids in me that will be in Raleigh in force.
I talked about my artist who is in high school earlier this week – https://caffeinatedrage.com/2018/01/02/my-kid-is-an-artist-one-of-the-many-reasons-for-me-to-go-to-the-rally-to-stop-classsizechaos/.
But I have another child in elementary school whose needs are very much affected by the class size mandate.
The same Raleigh lawmakers who claim to want to help kids with special needs with vouchers, charter schools, and other “reforms” are the same ones who have put our public schools in jeopardy with this class size mandate.
What my kid wants to remind them of is that the only real option he had for schooling was his local public school who takes him in every day with open arms, and yes, we as parents explored every possible avenue.
My kid also wants to remind them that:
- His teacher assistant is vital for his success.
- And he gets to take his “specials” with typical students so that he can learn from them as many children who happen to have Down Syndrome are very visual in their learning style.
- The physical education classes help with his muscular development as most children with Down Syndrome have hypotonia (low muscle tone).
- The arts classes help him to express himself as he learns to be better at communicating.
All of those are in jeopardy if nothing is done about the class size mandate.
To say that as a parent of a child who happens to have special needs that I am a little concerned about what Raleigh is allowing to happen is an understatement.
So, I will go to Raleigh as a teacher, advocate, and a parent.