Thursday, October 29, 2009


I sent a note to school with Griffin yesterday, asking his teacher to explain what, if anything, is happening with Griffin right now in relation to his learning.

WELL... I got a letter back detailing EVERYTHING they have done since he got there.... which amounts to virtually NOTHING. Sure, they put him into Reading Recovery.... 6 MONTHS after we got there... and only after I insisted he be taken into the programme!

AND they have gotten an assessment done showing he has 'Moderate Needs'... but NOTHING has happened since then.

So..... I am going to make an appointment to see the Deputy Principal (hopefully for tomorrow) to discuss our dissatisfaction with what is happening (or rather not happening) to help Griffin at the school.

WHY does everything have to be a bloody battle? Why must I push and push to get him help? Why can't they just do their job?

Once that is done... I'm gunna sew... well...after I ring the Sewing Machine shop to find out what is happening with MY machine... they were supposed to ring me back on Tuesday... but DIDN'T. Yet another battle waiting to happen I think. *sigh*

ONWARD.... the day can only get better right?

First and foremost: FREEDOM.....

I....TOTALLY...AGREE with your second comment... and as asked, did not publish it... and I get why I couldn't. Too many 'judgemental' people out there eh? Shame that we can't have our opinions and be respected for them.

Today so far:
- rang and made an appointment to see the School Deputy Principal on MONDAY to discuss Griffin.
- Rang Sewing Machine Shop... can get MY machine back this afternoon.
- Rang and got quote to fix our broken Treadmill.... took 2 hours to track someone down who knows anything about our treadmill!

In all... a successful morning... AND I did not yell any anyone!


Look at this and tell me:

Griffin will be 8 years old in 3 weeks... which means he has been at school for 3 whole years. Please tell me .. am I wrong in thinking his writing is like that of a 4 year old? Or am I really worried about nothing? I think not... ? Edit: his reading/spelling and maths skills are ALSO well below his peers.... From what Kip McGrath said he's at a 5-6 year old level with those. His vocabulary and ability to communicate is EXCELLENT.

End of Day: I ate too much at lunchtime... a regular fault of mine.. and have paid for it all afternoon... heartburn, acid reflux... totally sucks. One of these days I will learn THAT lesson. *sigh* That's me for the day... nite nite.


  1. So can relate to the school issues and be prepared to continue battling for the rest of the school life.... Have a happy day :-)

  2. Chris... I understand. Some things are the same the whole world over.

  3. Ya know what, Chris? Life is just a set of battles. I'm dealing with getting my child medical care for what can only be described as overwhelming physical problems. I'm on the phone almost everyday trying to get her some help. It's frustrating.

    It helps that I find my strength in God. I think I'd curl up in a little ball and cry all day if I didn't have Him to bolster me up. :)

  4. Sounds like you are on fire for a couple of heated discussions. Good luck with those....I think inboth these situations you have been extremely patient.

  5. It does seem to be an ongoing battle with the school and the kids. I wondered a while back if Griffin may be dyslexic? Hope you get answers soon and some help.

  6. a day for battling by the sounds of it...I guess it is a good thing to get all the bs over in one day instead of stuffing up a good day with each issuse blast them all at onece heheh god help the last person you call u will be well on the boil by then...that being said that bloody maching has been on going for long enuff and you boys life is at stake cant those morons see that.

  7. Don't take any crap from anyone Chris!

  8. It's very similar here. As parents, we must be a good advocate for our kids. Even if it makes us a bunch of ogres. If we had more parents doing this, the bloody (like my New Zealand talk?) guys at the top might make the needed changes.

    Kudos to you, Chris!

  9. If it's any consolation, his writing looks like like Dobby's did at that age. She was hopeless. She is still way behind with her spelling but her english sentence structure is much better and we can read her writing now (she is 12).

    Hang in there and be persistent. You will get results.

    Good luck with the machine! Fingers crossed!!!

  10. I think it's time you started to talk about getting a new machine or threatening legal action.

    Why do kids like Griffin slip through the cracks? Maybe you need to send him to school unwashed and unfed, start talking about your crack habit in the playground and maybe identify with the minority group of the moment - that might get some action. In my book the education system that doesn't address kids' learning needs appropriately is committing child abuse in the same way a parent who doesn't tend to the physical needs at home.

    Shoot me now!

  11. Griffins writing does not look like that of an 8 year old. Having said that, how is he going academically? Maybe he just sucks at handwriting.

    I suggest that you ask the principal to make sure she looks at Griffins day to day work and any results of stanine tests or any other testing they have done on him so she has all the information in front of her rather than just saying she will look into it.

  12. He's lucky to have you as his advocate. Stay strong and fierce. As far as the sewing maching goes, you much be more fierce. I can't believe how long they've had your machine and how many times they've had it. Be more fierce about that too.

  13. I'm glad Griffin has you to fight this battle for him. There are a lot of kids out there who don't get the help they need.

  14. Hey Chris, just from a teachers point of view, and that of someone from a family of teachers.

    Teachers want to do their very best for their students, and no teacher worth their salt 'lets' a kid fall through the cracks. But teachers jobs are so much more involved and tied up and wrapped in paperwork and meeting expectations and restrictions of government depts, rather than doing what we are best at... teaching.

    There will be only so much money, time and resources that can be spent on each kid. There are kids who can't even speak the language or with such serious learning difficulties needing attention and care. There is not much left in the pot for the average kid who just need a little more support.

    Teachers know and HATE this, if I had my way there would be enough to go around. But there simply isn't. So rightly or wrongly it falls back to the parents. The system isn't working, but we have to work within the structure we have got.

    Unless they are a really terrible school, they will be doing all that they can with what they have got. So people suggesting legal action is just al little overboard.

    You are doing all the right things. By all means talk to the school. Education is the shared responsibility of parent and school. But know there is only so much that they are able to do.

  15. Anonymous2:18 PM

    Where is he in comparison to his class? At my kids school they seem to help the really behind or really in front and the ones in the middle get to plod on. I think you are doing more than most would with the extra help but the school should be helping as well so together get him up to speed. Good luck Chris.


  16. Good for you for continuing to fight to get Griffin the help he needs. It is so hard when you can't get the right information from the people who should be giving him what he needs.

  17. I aways moan about it being "a conspiracy" when I'm at war with more than one person/thing at a time. The bastards are always out to get ya! Give em what for.

    RE school, making noise is the best way to make sure Griffin ins't totally forgotten. I remember I had a cousin who wrote like Griffin does now in high school & was the bane of his mothers (& teachers) life.

    Good Luck.

    PS Sewing Machine - put something in writing (always works better than a phone call) outlining what has happened to date & that if you do not have a successful resolution within 7 working days you will be forwarding the matter to the relevant ombudsman.

  18. Thank God he has you on his side, so many kids fall thru the "cracks' I had a friend who has a 25 year old son who cannot read or write, he was glossed over at school as being lazy, disruptive etc, now he has met a girl who is law student and she is teaching him to read!!! All I can say is never never ever give I know you wont, Cheers !!

  19. Yes I can see you concern over Griffin and you have every right to find out what there doing about it.

  20. Go in to your meeting ARMED with WHY's and WHY NOT? and I FEEL statements rather than YOU statements which make people defensive as a YOU statement can be viewed as attack (verbal) and GOOD LUCK!

  21. I collect links to free dyslexia help products and post them here-

    You might want to talk to him about how he sees the page, visual dyslexia issues are possible in poor readers with excellent communication skills.

  22. Wow - your family is lucky to have you in there fighting for them. Keep it up - it is tiring, I know but so worth it in the end!

  23. Good luck Chris, getting him the help he needs. Thankfully he has you looking out for him. Sorry to hear you had a stressful day. Hope tomorrow is better.

  24. O Chris! I guess you win the race of who would get "our machines" fixed first! It is 3 weeks today and I still do not have my embroidery machine fixed?

    It will be interesting to see if your machine NOW sews as well as your loaner??????????? I sure hope so!

    I can easily understand your grief with the school system! From my personal experience over here - IF you are lucky and a child gets it and makes good grades - they move on BUT IF you have a child that does not get it - it is like they are not worth wasting time over.It makes me furious.

    My first child was a daughter and she was always very smart , so she made good grades with no problem. But both of my boys had problems and it made school MISERABLE for them.They did finally put the first one in a special class at a different school miles away and the other kids tormented him by calling him RETARD!It was awful.

    The second one struggled on until the 6th grade and he hit rock bottom . I did remove him from public school and put him in a christian school for a year and it was a world of difference. Of course he had a ton more homework but he did so much better. I also homeschooled him for a year and I believe that was one of the happiest years for both of us.

    He then went back to a public high school and because of the drugs and wild gangs he ended up quitting school and getting his GED. It was awful and I HATE the public school system over here.

    My husband made it all through his grade school and NEVER LEARNED to read or write - as did his whole entire class!

    SO - give them grief , Girl - you are fighting for his future!

  25. "There is not much left in the pot for the average kid who just need a little more support."

    Griffin shouldn't be getting leftovers.

    And it's "overboard" to threaten legal action? Advocacy should be limited to chatting with the school about concerns and then... when they're NOT addressed, the parents should have to pay for private therapies they've already been taxed to provide for their child? I hope that's not what you meant... but that's how it comes across.

    "The system isn't working, but we have to work within the structure we have got."

    Did you just read what you typed? "THE SYSTEM ISN'T WORKING." So... whyyyyyyy do we have to "work within the structure we have got"??? That. Makes. NO. Sense.

    Keep fighting for what YOU think is the right thing, Chris. It's all about what GRIFFIN needs! Not the other kids in the class or the stupid "system!"

  26. I hate ongoing battles like yours....Life is jut a battle....Can't sleep tonight, so am doing my favorite thing, blog hopping. Be sure and stop by my main blog, where there is a GREAT drawing tomorrow night! Then head over to my Christmas blog and get some Great IDEAS!!!

  27. I used to be a reading specialist and tested and diagonosed problems. I took my first Master's in that. Now, without testing him, it is impossible to diagnose the problem accurately, but you should have him tested. Yes, you are in for a battle as may schools don't deal with learning disibilities well.
    Good luck!Wish that I could be there to help!

  28. Griffin's handwriting definitely does not look like that of an 8 year old. It's a sad truth that teachers are often not able to address these issues due to time and funding shortages. You should have access to a learning support teacher or a Guidance Counsellor through the school and you need to have testing done of his hearing, vision, neurological development, coordination, visual perception, auditory perception, intelligence, and academic achievement. With kids who need extra help, there's a big onus on the parents to do extra work at home, so the school and home need to work together as a team. Hope you can get some help soon Chris.


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