As you can tell from my title, it was not a good meeting this morning.
So Baltimore City Public Schools were delayed by two hours this morning on account of the snow and ice left over from yesterday’s not-quite-a-storm. Expecting that this might wreak havoc with the meeting schedule – we had the IEP meeting at 9:30 today – I reached out to his teacher Ms. A, who in turn reached out to the interim IEP Chair to find out if we were actually going to meet today or if there’d be a rescheduling.
Now, if the interim chair had mailed me this morning and said, “Oh yes, we need to delay, since the school isn’t open at 9:30,” I’d have been happy to work with her – even within this week – to find another time for the meeting. Or if she had called, as she has our home phone number, or my wife’s email address…
But nothing. Having nothing that said, “we’re delaying the meeting”, I dropped R off at nursery school and zipped across town to the school for the meeting, arriving at the school parking lot at 9:35 AM. First things first, as I always do, I pulled out my phone to see if she’d sent me a message in the interim… And at 9:29, she’d mailed me to tell me she’d “rescheduled the meeting to 11:30” and would like our attendance there… and included the long-missing OT assessment.
My email in response was very frank.
No. Unacceptable. Are you at the school now?
Of course, she was. So into the building I stormed (stopping at the office, as is required, to let them know I was going up to the IEP office), and then went up to let her feel my wrath.
The reason for the urgency, it seems, and her insisting that it’s for the Monster’s good that we do the meeting today, is a law that requires the meeting to cover assessments take place by the 90th day after the assessments were ordered. That 90th day is tomorrow, and she doesn’t want another violation of the law.
I pointed out, of course, that I’m simply going to invoke Education Article 8-405 again regarding the OT assessment – it was not delivered 5 business days in advance, again – and that therefore, they are in violation of the law, and that even were I willing to discuss the other assessments, they’d still be in violation of the 90 day rule on that basis.
The conversation descended into what I will admit was not one of my finest hours, where multiple profanities were included regarding the school’s obviously intentional misconduct at this point. Can anyone really be this stupid and incompetent when faced with one of the most argumentative parents in the school? It is so easy to make me happy – get me the reports and paperwork on time, and I’m happy to show up to meetings prepared to discuss my child’s future. But do not screw up your job and make it sound like I’m the bad guy because I’m not willing to let you take shortcuts with my son’s education. I will not be bullied into giving up the Monster’s rights.
BCPSS wants to play this game? FINE. LET’S PLAY.
They should, by this point, know who they’re screwing with. Apparently, someone needs a reminder.