The story I am about to relay is purely hypothetical.
When I am done, I will ask two questions.
A child with emotional and mental health illness is in a 2nd grade classroom. The parents do everything that they can to ensure that IDEA is followed and their child gets the education that they are legally entitled to receive.
Now let us add a variable.
the parent of that child is a special education teacher. We will call this parent, Teacher 1.
the parent of another child in the same classroom is a special education teacher. We will call this parent, Teacher 2.
Now, teacher 1 takes a position at a neighboring school district.
A year later teacher 2 also takes a position in the same neighboring district as teacher 1.
Over the course of the next few years, teacher 1 is made to feel less than adequate, unprofessional and generally poorly treated by teacher 2. Teacher 2 seems bent on running teacher 1 out of the school district.
Teacher 1 is placed on an improvement plan. No in classroom observations are done. Teacher 1 is told to do things a certain way, then chastised for doing so, with the idea that she wasn’t doing what she was told to do.
In the last few months of a school year, teacher 1 learns that teacher 2 believes that the child with severe emotional and mental health conditions should have been institutionalized years ago, because… that child disrupted the learning environment for the child of teacher 2.
Never mind that the child of teacher 1 spent a significant portion of their day in the special education area of the school.
Teacher 2 has indicated their beliefs to other staff in the school, but never to Teacher 1.
Should Teacher 1 be punished for the beliefs of Teacher 2?
Should Teacher 2 continue as a special education teacher if in fact they believe that special education students are disruptive to the education process for other students?
The child in question is currently in a residential facility.
Update June 2014.
Teacher 2 has left the district. I wish that teacher the best of luck with new employment.
My new goal in life is to require teacher employment records to follow the teacher.
- Teaching in an Inclusion Classroom (specialeducation.answers.com)
- Can I Trust Other Educators with My Own Child? (furthestsense.wordpress.com)
- Education for disabled students protected by law (darientimes.com)
- How to Navigate Speical Education in the School System (parentsguidetoraisingkids.wordpress.com)
- Bad Teacher (http://www.livingwithlogan.com/2013/02/bad-teacher.html)