Friday, May 20, 2011
And After All the Drama, the Call Finally Comes!
Last I posted I told you all that we had gotten Giannini in Round I for middle school for our special ed son, Ben. It was our last choice for us, and, not as one poster here suggested, because we were concerned its test scores were low (they aren't), but because the school has way too heavy an academic emphasis. Before his present elementary, he'd been at a heavily academic elementary that basically ignored the special ed kids. We were intent on not going back to that kind of environment. We were also waitlisted at Gateway Charter Middle, a new charter that is really our first choice because of its smaller grade size and focus on special ed. So we went into Round II and also filed a medical appeal. I didn't come up with the medical appeal idea -- the placement office encouraged me to file the medical appeal, since Ben's learning problems are medical problems. Silly me, I poured my heart into the medical appeal, getting two letters from Ben's doctors, a report from a psychologist, and letters from both Ben's teachers and his Inclusion teacher. This past weekend we got our response: nothing in Round II and a letter from SFUSD about the medical appeal imperiously telling us our appeal was not only denied, but it was permanently denied. Like forever and forever. Anyway, we were completely crushed. Then we got a call from Gateway Charter Middle School - there was an opening for Ben! Oh my goodness, it was exactly what we wanted. After much excitment and dancing around, we have now enrolled Ben at Gateway Charter Middle School. We are impressed with Gateway's new principal, Aaron Watson, and its new staff of teaching professionals. Starting up a new school (this will be Gateway's "founding" class) is going to be a new experience for us, but we feel assured that, with the proven track record Gateway High has established, the middle school will also be a great success. So thanks to all you parents out there for tolerating my saga of finding a middle school for our special ed child. We made some mistakes along the way, but feel we have finally gotten what Ben really needs in a middle school.