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20 Jan

So I’m setting up shop to serve a very under served group. That would be parents and teachers and students with exceptionalities. Special Education. Special needs, whatever you want to call it. This blog is about the world of the people who have special needs and those who care for them. But unlike most other writings this is going to be honest and gritty. I mean really gritty. That’s the way the truth is, sometimes. It isn’t always nice, pleasant and easy. And with persons with disabilities, it can get very raw in the reality. So brace yourself. Don’t worry, there will also be some warm, funny moments here. You will be informed as well as entertained. And often shocked. So let us begin.

I’m going to be anonymous, but there will be some personal info here where someone may just be able to figure out who I am. I’m okay with that. If you see me in real life, pretend you know nothing about the blog. Difficult if you happen to be in it, but I am going to change names to protect the innocent and not so innocent.

I am a special education teacher and have been for over 10 years. I’ve taught almost every disability category recognized by school systems, mostly in the secondary level, although I’ve worked with younger kids. I’m currently working with students with severe and profound disabilities. I supervise one other teacher and 5 paraeducators. We’ll get to them later.

I started my special education career working with students with emotional and behavior disorders (EBD). I did self-contained for a few months, and then worked in a psychoed center and then a state mental hospital, before settling in to my current spot.

Somewhere during this odyssey of becoming a Sp.Ed teacher, I got married. And then had kids. My oldest has some significant developmental delays along the autistic spectrum. He’s almost 7, in regular kindergarten and is doing well. My youngest, age 4, is also in special ed preschool part-time.

So, yeah. I know a thing or two about special education from both sides of the table. And just to sweeten this even more, when I was in 7th grade, I was tested for special education! So it takes one to know one, or something like that. While I didn’t qualify for anything, I never forgot meeting in a janitor’s closet with some strange guy doing all these tests with me for 2 or 3 days straight. I remember being kind of embarrassed about the whole thing. More on that, later. Maybe.

So I have a story to tell. I’ve also got things to say as a teacher and as a parent. I think I’ve got things to contribute. I also have a lot to learn from other teachers and moreso other parents. I admire fellow parents who have already blazed the trails and those still blazing. There’s nothing easy about this business.

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