Wednesday, September 19, 2012


From reading just this blog you may have the impression that I like conflict.  I sure write about plenty of it with Little Man's school.  The truth is I really hate it.  I get a stomach ache even thinking about confrontations.  I just won’t let that make me back down.  I’ll white knuckle my way through it when I think it’s important.   Getting mad helps me sometimes (and sometimes hurts) but even when my temper cools, I slog through it with a kind of grim determination. 

Tonight was our PTO board meeting at Little Man's school and grim determination is how I’d describe myself headed into that. I spent at least half the day dreading it since I knew that the letters I sent had been delivered yesterday and I would have to sit across the table from the principal  who flat out lied to me and who I had publically called out on it.  I was a little curious how he would handle it but mostly I was determined to stare him down - stomach cramps and nausea be damned.  If I let him walk on me now this school system will walk on me and worse fail Little Man for the next 12 years. 

He did not raise the issue during the meeting.  This is good because I’d have handed him his head for discussing things related to my son specifically with people who have no business being involved.  After the meeting though he asked to speak with me a moment.  To my surprise I received personal apology AND the written one I had requested.  To my further amazement he admitted in both that he was “less than forthright”.  I didn’t expect he would ever say he lied.  (OK, technically he didn’t but there aren’t too many ways to interpret “less than forthright”).  I expected he would tell me that he had sent the memo but some secretary forgot to get it the teachers’ boxes and I misunderstood him.  Or some other shift the blame strategy.   It definitely was not what I expected.  So – is it enough?

Well, it doesn’t get someone on the staff trained but honestly I think that is more important at the middle school and high school levels than it is now.   My request that there be such a person and the fact that I offered to pay for the training which they declined is officially on record.  Those I think are important points for the future.  I also feel like I made an important point, not just to the principle but to the school board and special ed department, overall.  I won’t be walked on, brushed off,  or ignored.  I will call them on bullsh** when that is what they are shoveling.   
I know I’ve mentioned my tendency toward the cynical before so you know I’ve had my thoughts about how sincere his apology was and how much was a show.   However, even if it was for show, we’ve both learned from the fact that he felt compelled to put one on that I can make him “perform”.   I accepted his apology.   We’ll see how it goes from here.

1 comment:

  1. I think its amazing that he both spoke to you and wrote the letter. Hopefully this will mean more cooperation moving forward