Greetings K.: My name is Glenda, I have been active in the SELPHA, that your child is part of. I have been on the CAC board for several years(CAC- Community Advisory Committee). I am the mother of a child with Aspberger's Syndrome, as well as other learning disabilities, I have an older child that has Auditory Dyslexia. So I became a Advocate for Special Education. My husband taught in HaywardUSD. His concernas a teacher was that he was not given any IEP information until he had requested it several times for his students. I appreciate the detail that you gave with your concern. Let me share my experiances.
Hayward, Castro Valley, San Lorenzo, San Leandro, are all part of the SELPHA. In many cases they share the responsibility of the students so you may have a CV student, attending in Hayward, a Hayward student in San Lorenzo,a visually imparied student going to Fremont etc.. With that said.. Believe me this has NEVER BEEM EASY ON THE FAMILIES.
I am always on the side of what is best for my child and believe that the childs needs come first before the convience of adults. That being said; the reality is Hayward, is a basket case when it comes to several areas. They have such a large amount of students that English is the 2nd language, and to have disabilities on top of it is a hardship. As well as retaining thier teachers. I know that is not your problem-- I just want you to be prepared that you will hear all this.
I have reviewed several IEP's lately, making sure that services are being given. I know that the term Home School, is in a gray area, mostly because the way that streets are divided up for the elementry and Jr. High levals. Just to let you know that in Fremont, my cousins lived 3 houses from an elementry school and had her children bussed a distance away.
You are ableto call an IEP, at any time it is called for.
1. You, will have to show that this current school is not able to give your child the education that the IEP calls for.
2. That the school you want is ready, prepared, and not over the number of students that they are able to take without causing detrament to others education.
3.** The district, may offer you to send your child elsewhere within the SELPHA. They do have that right, but as a rule I found that it is only done for the benifit of the child.
Trust me that you are at the start of many fights. I have been at this for over 30 years and am always surprised at the things that I hear.
I suggest that yu or your husband, offer to sit on the CAC Board. to represent the Hayward District. I found over the years that Hayward, did not have enough parents to represent them. I can say that you will meet and get to know all the Directors, of all the Special Services in all districts. You will get to see, hear, and ask questions that otherwise you would not get to. Help decide about the guest speakers, and topics that parents will be invited to. Over a 6 year period, I have seen parents get all that they needed for their children because of being able to get the advice from the other parents, and leadership that have been at these meetings. They are held only 5 times a year.
To address the issue of who to bring to IEP. YOU have the right to bring anyone that will give you support and help you to remain calm. This is the most important meeting you can have for your child. As an advocate, I always suggest that you bring anything that you have that proves your points, a person that speaks well and can stay to topic-- it is to easy to get emotional and loose sight of the goal. That you contact CASE, to see if they can advise you of any current changes in the laws and state programs.
If you can get a current copy of the laws and definitions of words and titles, that the state will send you for free. Read and highlight anything that you believe pertains to you.
If you are at all considering anything legal. Ask the district, to give you the information for fileing a GRIEVANCE. This will be valuable information to have. I wish you well. If I can be of any help please feel free to contact me. Just keep in mind always that it is all about your child and what is proven to be best for him not anything for the convience of the parents. Nana Glenda