… and I feel hopeless.
I have kids who came to me at the beginning of the year reading well, well below grade level. Kids who struggle to read books that students YEARS younger read with ease. Kids whose inability to read and/or inability to comprehend spoken reading affects their ability to understand word problems in math, and, BTW, the ENTIRE state math exam is essentially a reading exam with numbers thrown in.
For weeks now, I have been fighting with everything I have not to sink into the “oh, well, whatever, these kids’ll never pass it so don’t even worry” quagmire that some other SPED folks I’ve encountered seem to be in.. AND I’ve struggled with why I should bother to struggle with that.
Part of me wants to respect that people older and more experienced in the profession are right, that they’ve been around this block, and they figure, “just do what’s best for the kid and never mind the test.” Maybe that’s a good philosophy to have.
And then I have other folks screaming in my ear that no matter what disabilities my kids have, I’m supposed to EXPECT them to pass these tests, and if I will only hold them to high enough expectations, they will do as we “expect”.
And then I think, you know, I can expect a fish to climb a tree as much as I damned well want to, but it ain’t EVER GONNA HAPPEN, and asking it to happen is unfair to the fish.
And then people tell me to stop thinking of that fish as a fish, starting thinking of it as a monkey with a few fish-like qualities, and it will morph into a monkey.
It’s enough, everyone, for me to consider just throwing in the towel on this whole “special ed” thing. Or on this whole, “being a teacher” thing in general.
I. Feel. Defeated.
Is essentially what I’m saying.
Is this a happy post? Nope. But it’s an honest one.
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