A Study in Contrasts

So while I’m harping on the school issue…

As you all know, I’m not thrilled with the school that’s the host to the program that my Monster attends – GHEMS is one of the lowest rated elementary schools, performance-wise, in the entire Baltimore City public school system.  This is contrasted with the school the Monster is actually zoned for, which is one of the best schools in the city.

This doesn’t mean that the staff at his school isn’t doing their best or isn’t interested in his success.

I’ve been very up-front about the fact that I really wish BCPSS would move the Together We Grow program to better schools – if the goal is having them get social modeling, then they should be getting such from some of the better students in the district, rather than children in a school that’s low-performing.

However, the problem with the bus this weekend does illustrate how much the staff at the school tries.  Despite family issues, the principal responded with the very reasonable “I’ll get back to you on Monday” at 10 PM on Friday evening, for example… and then followed up with a very reasonable explanation for why we never got a call from them regarding the bus issue – that there were multiple busses missing, and by the time the administrator-on-site had gotten to our bus, he’d been notified that the bus had already called… and felt that was sufficient.

But the exchange didn’t end there, which is why I make my comment about how their staff cares.  The principal asked me – which I thought unusual and deserving of comment – what I think of the Monster’s progress this year.

His teacher, Ms. A, is wonderfully dedicated to making sure that he is getting the help he needs and that we have appropriate information to reinforce things at home.  His OT and SLP, while not as communicative as we’d like, have been doing trying different things with him to advance towards his IEP goals.  And the environment is not as bad as we might have feared, given the school… though I do still wonder – constantly – how much further he’d advance if he had better models, a better school environment, et cetera.

But it’s a huge difference, truthfully, with how the rest of BCPSS deals with us and with him.  And for that, I’m very thankful.

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