It was last year at this time that Joe and I met with Courtney’s teacher for Parent/Teacher conferences. For the most part, I can’t remember what all was discussed at this meeting. What I do remember though, is discussing what they were projecting her placement would be for this school year. Being a teacher, I knew then that you do have to be careful talking about a topic like that without it being an actual IEP and I also knew that their projection was just that, a projection. It was at that meeting that we were told Courtney was projected to be in the 5 hour structured learning class.
One of the many differences between Parent/Teacher Conferences and an IEP meeting is that an IEP meeting is driven by the legal document. Because there is a legal document being made, notes are taken. At Parent/Teacher conferences, notes are typically not taken. So at Courtney’s IEP meeting that was a held a few months later when the curve ball of a different placement was thrown at us, I was so wishing I had notes from the Parent/Teacher conference. Chances are, it wouldn’t have made a difference. Chances are everything would have continued as it has.
Parent/Teacher conferences are approaching again and for some reason I have made myself sick to my stomach over them. I can’t help but relive last years conferences and IEP meeting. I immediately decided that I wanted to make sure notes were taken at these conferences just in case something came up that I would want to refer back to. I was hoping it would be as simple as just asking them for someone to take notes but it appears I was wrong.
I really struggle with being “that parent”. I went into her first school year hoping I wouldn’t be “that parent”. But here I am…I’m “that parent”. The parent that would make me sick to my stomach if she was one of my student’s parents. That parent that no matter what you do you feel you can’t make them happy. I don’t want to be “that parent”. But, I do want to be Courtney’s voice. I want to make sure that she is getting everything she deserves. I want to make sure that nothing gets in the way. I want to make sure that nothing slips by me because I let my guard down. If only I could find that in between. I want to be the parent who fights to get her daughter everything she needs but still not looked at as “that parent”.