In approximately 72 hours, both Red Clay Consolidated and Christina school districts will have decided on Governor Jack Markell and Secretary of Education Mark Murphy’s Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) for the six priority schools in Delaware. Both boards are meeting on Tuesday, September 30th to officially decide. Some are saying Christina will not sign the MOU, and some are saying Red Clay Consolidated will write their own MOU.
My big question all along in this is why September 30th? Is it because that is the last day for schools in Delaware to submit their student counts? Will the DOE actually try to implement something immediately and count the numbers of these students in a new school? Would that even be legal? This may seem like a very crazy scenario, but look how crazy this whole thing has been to begin with.
Parents up in Wilmington may think this is a good thing, but it is not. If you are a parent of a special needs child already in attendance at one of the priority schools, you need to be VERY concerned. History has been filled with examples of mass segregation of persons with disabilities. And this will happen here. There is no way they are going to offer inclusion to 338 children with special needs at six or more different charter schools in Wilmington. They will herd these children together, “for their benefit, to give them a quality education” and parents will think it’s a great thing.
So here is what you need to do, parents of these 338 special needs children: On Monday, you need to request an IEP meeting. With the children’s current IEP team. Tell the schools you would like this as soon as possible. If these schools radically change overnight, and they start offering mandatory after school “extra help” and “tutoring”, this needs to be reflected in you child’s IEP. If the school changes ANY staff from members that aren’t already on your IEP meeting notice, they need to advise you in writing why this is. If they are unwilling to comply, let me know. My email address is firstname.lastname@example.org if you want to send me any information.
72 hours. You have 72 hours to protest this and use your voice. Don’t waste the time that has been given to you parents of the priority schools.