Sep 8, 2008
The Miseducation of DC Special Education Students...
Earlier this month, I wrote about the lack of special education teachers and educational aides in No Special Education Teacher for You ! More emails pour in about the problems we face in DCPS due to the lack of appropriate staff and resources to educate our students. Other complaints have surfaced from Davis, Ferebee Hope, Garfield, Kimble, and Smothers Elementary schools and Anacostia Senior High amongst a host of other programs where self contained classrooms still lack special education teachers, educational aides, related service providers and textbooks still.
A DCPS service provider makes a poignant appeal in her recent email: “Hi Candi. It is truly a travesty, the disservice that our young children, especially black males, are being subjected to across this city. The E.D. (emotionally disturbed) programs are grossly understaffed and in total chaos and disarray. The conditions at Shadd are widely known, which is why central office personnel have been detailed; but the local school citywide programs are just as bad. Examples include Ferebee-Hope, which has a primary and intermediate class on paper. Only one teacher and no aides have shown. The school is supposed to have a full-time social worker but does not have one at all. The classes for students with an emotional disturbance are combined and the atmosphere is extremely confrontational. Students are aggressive with one another and the teacher. Davis, Garfield, Kimble, Smothers, and Thomas are also under staffed. My concern is that we are on the brink of a major catastrophe. This is a class-action lawsuit waiting to happen. Do we really wait until someone, child or staff, gets seriously injured before we address the issue? Unfortunately there are multiple issues of equal importance within the school system that need to be addressed. Please give this one some thought before it erupts and encapsulates us all.”
If you know of a program that lacks special education resources, please drop me a line c/o firstname.lastname@example.org Posted by Candi.