Academically ready for first grade but………..

I went into shock a few days ago when Mike’s kindergarten teacher told me that Mike is academically ready for first grade. So what happened in the two weeks since I met with the principal?

I don’t know. But I know his teacher still thinks he is not mature enough for first grade right now. She made it clear it was my decision on where to place Mike for the next school year.

This new twist started when I e-mailed the teacher about sending home Mike with worksheets where he is required to count in patterns of 2s, 5s and 10s. I, naturally, asked the teacher whether Mike could go to first grade next if I fixed his math struggles over the summer.

She acted dumb about the worksheets I wanted for Mike in her responding e-mail message. My husband got ticked, sent her an e-mail message with being very direct about the worksheets I was requesting and that she answer my first grade question.

So, the next day following this e-mail drama I volunteered for Mike’s school’s book fair during the time slot that included Mike’s class visit. I started off simple when I first saw Mike’s teacher.

Mike came home with a small piece of paper with something that appeared to be access for an online program. I asked whether she gave Mike that information and she didn’t. Then I approached her again about whether Mike cries too much in school because he told me he cries for me in school and that he cried in school the previous day when a balloon popped during an assembly.

Then somehow the conversation moved onto my question about first grade for next year. Mike would do fine in first grade reading and okay in first grade math, get the help he needed and would need me to help him at home. But Mike’s teacher is worried his maturity would be a problem.

She claimed that she would be e-mailing the principal to set up a meeting with me. I don’t have any interest in meeting with this woman again and I know it sounds reckless and irresponsible. Mike made some academic miracle in two weeks and she didn’t think it was important enough to inform me.

Mike’s teacher is going to put a fake smile on her face again in another meeting. I can’t do fake again. I told the principal about how she hasn’t initiated much communication with me and didn’t answer the e-mail message I sent her before the school year started so she knew about Mike’s background with developmental delays and the interventions done to help him.

Boy, the first impression of this teacher was so true for the entire year. She is not a communicator and did not work with me to help Mike as we could have.

Mike’s preschool teacher, Mrs. Stevens, went beyond the call of duty for a student who hasn’t been her student all school year. Mike’s kindergarten teacher offered him one worksheet to practice writing numbers at home. That’s the only help she offered him at home.

Mrs. Stevens bought him a dinosaur set and a patterns activity set to help him understand patterns. She also gave me worksheets two or three times during the school year to help Mike with math.

One teacher can really make a difference. The one whose job it was to put her whole heart in helping Mike succeed this year just let me down. The one whose job ended a year ago to help my son succeed in school gave me hope.

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