Okay, I have to calm myself down because I am so disheartened by this event. This morning, I caught a glimpse of a story indicating that a autistic child in kindergarten was voted out of his class in Florida. What is wrong with society? After reading the entire article, it occurred to me that this child they were referring to "became" my own son. He is going into kindergarten next year and,as I was thinking and reading, I was becoming personally involved. I am horrified that an adult, especially in the educational system, would even remotely think that this was approriate to do to a 5 year old child. As a mother of a special needs child, I now know that I cannot rest until there are changes made, awareness understood, and a greater sense of empathy for the special needs. In breaking my thoughts down, I see 3 areas of concentration:
1. The education system - We have come a long way since 20 years (even 10 years) ago, but we obviously need to do more. I hope you all follow, support, and act with me as I lead by example. I would be a hypocrite to my son if I only expected him to work as hard as he does and not do the same for him.
2. The responsibility of community - Creating community awareness is one thing. Making our communities accountable for eachother is a challenge. Autism, or any special needs individual, is an important part of our daily living. We all need to take responsibility and take action. The special needs community can be helped, and more importantly contribute to society, if given the tools, education, and acceptance that we (the typical person) is allowed.
3. High profile and business Involvement/Investments - Businesses, people, and new ideas need to jump in to make change possible. We all have heard about the best investment we could do is to invest in our children.
Today's question: Ask yourself if you or your business invests in ALL children (not just the easy, typical, uncomplicated children)? Do you invest energy and resources into the special needs children of this world? Does the PTA in your school work with the special ed PTA to create a partnership that contributes to the educational system?
For me, I am saddened by the ignorance and sheer thoughtlessness of even one teacher making such a mockery of a little child. This is one teacher too many. I wonder if there are others.