We had another m-team at Tommy’s school today. It was one of the most depressing meetings I’ve ever attended. School has been open for three weeks now and Tommy has been doing almost no work. Every day I ask each of the children how their day went, if they have homework or projects and if they have papers to show me. Every night I clean out their backpacks and set their bags, clothes and equipment out for the morning rush. Tommy has been adamant that he gets his work finished at school, that he does great and that they have been doing lots of review. Today I was told that Tommy is failing everything. All of the staff complained about Tommy’s annoying and obnoxious behavior. They came as close to saying “We don’t want him here” as the law would allow. They did ask several times if he wouldn’t be happier going back to middle school. He didn’t do any better there and there is nothing wrong with Tommy’s intelligence that warrants suddenly failing him and having him repeat eighth grade. Tommy has been kicked out of group therapy and church. He has zero friends despite his earnest desire to have just one. I wonder if he would be happier running around with the troubled teens even though he’d always be the patsy for their schemes. At least he’d have someone. Don’t scold me for saying that because it’s not an option. Nobody wants to be his friend. Maybe I would save him heartbreak and frustration if I just let him spend his days and nights reading and playing video games for the rest of his life. It would make him happy and nobody would be “bothered” by his noises, endless chatting about subjects that most people have no interest in and his ignorance of social behaviors. I wouldn’t feel any worse than I do now after answering the Vice Principal’s “He’s going to annoy the wrong kid and get beat up. We can’t always protect him” with “I know he’s going to get punched eventually.” I feel like the worst parent ever.
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Cathy, I have heard my own wife say “I feel like the worst parent ever.” but it is not your fault.
When you talk about your Tommy, I see so much of my 5-year-old in him.
It is very difficult for me to read the blog about Tommy.
I don’t have any advice for you, I’m sorry. You must know that my thoughts are with you though.
Please take care.
Cathy, this is a real tragedy for the education system and Tommy gets the fallout. My mother has been a teacher for 32 years and she talks about her efforts and her frustration from the LACK of efforts on the part of other teachers for special circumstancies, with almost all kids have. They all can’t be like my mother, but they should be. Teachers should want to TEACH and HELP and should be paid for it (to attract those that are doing it for the right reasons). It’s a real travesty and I know the advocate that you are, you are doing all one parent can do.
He and my brother might get along. All Cody does is play video games and watch sports on TV. Does Tommy like watching sports and playing sports video games?
I’ve taught kids like Tommy, and I feel for you. Trust me when I say there isn’t much you can do but let him find his way. You can’t do the work, and you can’t force him to enjoy school. I’d be looking for a more positive school for him, though. Sounds like they aren’t looking for a solution, just trying to get rid of the “problem”.
Oh I feel for you so much – Tommy in many ways is very much like my Jamie. I wish I had advice for you but all I can do is say I know what you are going through.
Oh, I am so sorry. I know there’s nothing I can say to make it better, but please know I’m thinking of you and your family.
there is light at the end of the tunnel
i am working with two aspergers boys – one who is in similar problems at school and 2 years older than tommy
he would love to be tommys friend
i’m sure his mum sheryl would hook the boys up with msn or i could if you want – chat to me tonight online (your thursday day)
Wow, I don’t know what to say. It’s such a shame that the school is wiling to give up on him before really giving him a chance.
Hugs for you and Tommy.