Jason and I talked. I should start a whole little blog called "Jason and I talked". I digress. There was an incident yesterday while James was at program. It was pretty bad. For some reason this led to Jason and I discussing the upcoming school year. Oh wait, I know what led to that. James. And His Big Mouth. James has this brain malfunction where he opens his mouth and just says what he thinks. OK, a lot of people have that. However, this is more extensive. He doesn't know when he's pissed someone off and just keeps spouting off the stupidity. That led to James angering some pretty BAD kids and he got himself beat up. Thankfully he wasn't physcially hurt. His glasses got a little bent.
James had quite a few issues last year with school. Almost all of it was behavior related. He was suspended for a full 12 days. That isn't counting the number of times I had to go pick him up early from school. That happened about once every 2 weeks or so. Or the times I would get phone calls from the staff asking me to talk to James and MAKE him do as he needed to. Those happened, on average, at least twice a week. And if ONE phone call was made in the day, it was usually at least 3.
This next year, I don't want to deal with this. This utter stupidity of the school system and their absolute inability to handle James. I don't want the headaches, anger, and frustration from dealing with their close minded every kid fits the same form and if they don't they shouldn't be here crap. James had two teachers. His mainstream classroom teacher and his resource room teacher. Most often, he handled himself well in the mainstream classroom. There were times when I would get calls from his resource room teacher. Though not nearly as often as from the "behavior staff".
The "behavior staff" and I butted heads more times than I can count. On the Wed. before Thanksgiving, they wanted to suspend him for leaving class. He was leaving class because he was trying avert having a melt down because he was angry and frustrated. I told them No I'm not picking him up and No you are not suspending him. The man on the other end couldn't believe I had said no. And then he hung up on me. By the way, Don't EVER Hang Up On ME. Especially when I am discussing my child. So I called his teacher. THEN I called the principal. James wasn't suspended.
The woman on the "behavior staff" would call me to tell me to come get James. And should go on about what he did and how it was bad and how it made her angry and blah blah blah. Um, you are supposed to be trained as someone who handles children with behavior difficulties and you are bothered by a little 9 year old kid telling you off? Jeez lady, grow some balls. James has this phrase he uses for all adults, people in charge. "You People". Now this "professional" lady thought he was using a racial slur. She asked me if he knew what it meant. I laughed. I informed her it was anyone in charge. That, no, he doesn't care if you are black, white, or purple, if you are telling him what to do, and you are anyone but me or Jason, but mostly me, he won't do it most often. That's just James. That's his disorder. You can't medicate that out of him.
So in light of all these issues, I am going to homeschool James. Behavior Plans aren't working for him. The Resource Room isn't working for him. What works best for him is to have him as isolated as possible. To not have to interact with the other kids unless he wants to. Well Hell, I can do that here at home.
There also has been the concern over Jayden. Her teachers just can't get her to DO her work. To work in a way so she is learning. She is easily distracted by everything around her. Also, if she doesn't want to do it, much like her brother, she won't. She pulls a different card than him. It's not a behavior issue. It's simply "I can't". Apparently, the teachers take that as it is. I have been told the entire year this past year about everything Jayden just can't seem to do. Here's the kicker here folks. YES, SHE CAN. I've put her to the test. Everything they told me she can't do, yes she can. I look at her and say "I don't want to hear you can't. You have to do this. You don't have a choice." Screw explaining the why of it right now. She's 6, she doesn't even COMPREHEND the why of it really, she just sees that mom told her to do it, so she's doing it. So Jayden is going to be homeschooled as well.
Oh, have I mentioned I'm not an organized person at all? Thankfully, I have the Four or More Mommies. Many of them are homeschoolers and they are an amazing resource. They have all kinds of info for me to take and use as need be. One of the great things about homeschooling is I can work at the pace of the kids. We don't need to spend all day doing their work, unless that is how long it takes them to complete their assignment. I can do direct rewards if need be. They are also much more likely to do the work because it is ME telling them to do it and they have been trained since birth to do as Mom and Dad direct.
So in the next couple of months I will be working on organizing our homeschool "stuff". Figuring out lesson plans and gathering teaching aids and materials. I'll be using my printer and going through lots of ink. Picking up school supplies on the cheap when they go on sale. And hoping and praying I don't lose my mind. And that I can get through to them, that I CAN teach them and they WILL learn. That's the most intimdating part of all right now.
Homeschooling does open us up a little. We were staying here in Kalamazoo because of The Promise. However, homeschoolers don't qualify. The kids will go to a 2 year college, then transfer to a 4 year if that's what they want. So Jason will be able to expand his job search area. He wants to be making more money. About $10K more a year would really give us a cushion that we need. It's still a rather low income, but hey, we already live frugally. That small amount will allow us to make sure that we live within our means, and not be so reliant on outside factors, like child support. Will we be staying Kalamazoo? I don't know. As of right now, yes. However if Jason finds a job in Holland or Battle Creek or St. Joe or....well, you get the idea, we'll move. It's what is best for the family, so we'll do it.
It would be sad to leave this house. Leave my gardens. The hard work I put in to the girls' room. However, a long commute for Jason is not an option. We tried that once. After a year, it wore us out. Both him and I. We want to stay on this side of the state. Within about an hour of where we are now. That will keep us still close to his family south of us, and all of my family to the north of us. Jason wants to be able to start taking monthly, or even bi-weekly trips to see his folks. They are getting up there in age, at both of them being over 70 now. We can't afford that right now. We can barely afford our trips to pick up Katy Beth. So his job search continues. And I start homeschooling.
Life is always full of change. I think the kind of people we are is determined by how we handle that change.