“On Track To Graduate”, while I see an F & Two D’s In His Grade Book

State Legislature & School Districts Are Failing Our Kids

The wife and I went to our son’s annual IEP meeting at West High School, and I find it concerning that a minimum passing grade to graduate seems to be all they are concerned about, with the IEP manager starting the meeting by saying “Conner is on track to graduate”, following that up with “he puts in the minimum effort to get a passing grade”, that passing grade being a D, that’s just 60 points out of 100.

As outlined before in my post about Conner stealing old phones from myself and his grandmother in the past year, and using them in class, connecting to the school’s WiFi network as the phones obviously did not have service. Again, it concerns me that, 1) he is allowed to have a cellphone in class, and 2) that they don’t notify us as parents that he is using a phone in class, instead of completing his assigned work.

It’s insane that students are not forced to keep electronic devices in their locker, as to not be a distraction in class. Especially, in today’s world where everything is Internet-connected and kids being obsessed with social and streaming media. I would support a move where teachers can confiscate such devices if it’s being used in class, requiring a parent to pick up the device from the school office at the end of the day.

Unfortunately, this is who our son is; he tried to justify his stealing, “as it wasn’t being used, I thought it was fine to take the phone”. He wrote an apology to his grandmother, which was “me, me, me”, not an apology in any way, shape or form. Writing about the personal consequences of his actions, rather than saying sorry for stealing from his grandmother, he does not have a single thought about other’s feelings.

And, doing the bare minimum possible is his mantra in everything he does. For example, when we ask him to do the dishes, he’ll refuse to rinse plates, putting the dishes straight into the dishwasher, and 1/4 of the time, not put a tablet into the dishwasher, meaning I have to do the dishes a second time.

I was not so concerned in previous years, thinking “he’ll snap out of it”, but he’ll be 16 this August, and if anything, this minimum effort, self-entitlement attitude has gotten worse. I fear for his future in the workplace, the employee pool is huge, and employers won’t keep someone who is not putting in their best effort. This is doubly troubling when autistic adults have a less than 20% employment rate already.

The bottom line, I think the Wichita Unified School District is failing our children, allowing our kids to basically do what they want in class, using phones and tablets, when they should be learning. I can’t speak for other parents, but when I see multiple D’s and F’s at any given time during the school year on our son’s grade book, I can’t just accept it. Part of it is on our son, but an equal part is teachers and staff failing our son, while keeping us, as parents out of the loop, until halfway through the school year.

To expand, this is a systematic problem, maybe, if our schools were funded properly by state legislatures, schools would not have such low expectations for their students. This is a big problem in Kansas, which is still suffering from the fallout from Gov. Sam Brownback’s tenure with block grants and the debunked trickle-down economics theory. Of course, lesser-educated kids are easier to control, knowledge is power.

Have Something To Say About This Post? Please Comment Below!