By Hazel Donovan
Every year it’s the same. I walk into the school conference room carrying a binder and a single question. Teachers and administrators group in a defensive formation, a single chair waiting across the table. Like a criminal facing the parole board, I take my designated seat, eyes on the neat white stapled pages arranged like place settings.
A quick glance at the ring of faces — tight smiles, dropped eyes — and I have my answer. In spite of everything, nothing has changed. Hope flutters out the window with the spring breeze.
I blink back tears. Crying in an IEP meeting was expected in Kindergarten, the tissue box at the ready. They tolerated it in elementary school, disapproved of it in Junior High. My son’s a freshman now, and the faces at the table are blank. There’s a quarter moon mark where my nail digs deep into my finger, the pain a necessary reminder to focus. The faces start speaking, and the words are familiar but like a pair of dress shoes, never quite comfortable.
Your son is too loud, distractible, annoying to the other students.
The buzzing starts in the back of my head. The build-up to a scream. Continue Reading…