Tuesday, February 5, 2013

"What we've got here is failure to communicate."

I admit that when this came to mind this morning regarding K and the tutoring situation from yesterday. I could here the song, but couldn't figure it out.  It took me about an hour to remember that it is Guns N' Roses song Civil War.  For those of you not wondering about that, but you've stayed to read on, I have the song playing right now.  I kind of forgot how much I liked the music of Guns N' Roses.  (Though I've never watched the movie, it is originally a quote from Cool Hand Luke.)  I should get back on the subject at hand though.

K's tutor called my cell this morning.  Of course, I had the cell ringer turned off since I was at an awards dinner last night and forgot to turn it back up.  No matter, I did hook up with her during her break time and we hashed out a plan.

1.  She apologized for not knowing that K's social studies grade was so adversely affected by being pulled for math tutoring.  I told her that we have an at-home study plan, so we're hoping that resolves the issue.

2.  She said that K was in the highest level for literacy intervention and that they pulled the 390 kids as a precautionary measure.

3.  Because of a sudden change in tutors, the literacy help was delayed which is why we hadn't received an earlier letter.

4.  She agrees that K will do just fine on the reading OAA.  She said that she didn't mean to upset K so badly.  She said that she was honest with the kids when they asked why they were pulled for literacy tutoring.  I told her that K and I discussed that she is fine for advancing to the 4th grade regarding her performance on the OAA.  She passed for the 3rd Grade Guarantee.  I said that her performance on this  test gives her school a report card.  "So if the kids don't pass, they'll just pack up shop and shut down." (I have no idea where she heard this.)  "No, they won't close your school.  It does give them an idea of where to improve."

5.  She ended with asking what I wanted done for K.  We decided that she will remain for math tutoring.  She said that she has seen the light come on in regard to her starting to get math.  I told her that I've seen that as well and don't want her to lose momentum.  We discussed her being on target for 3rd grade reading and while we're striving to continue to improve, she is plugging along fine.  I told her that I will continue addressing the items outlined in the OAA report.  K will continue with speech twice a month.  She's started becoming self conscious about her R deficit with speech and we've been working hard to get that corrected.  Speech is a must.

K's teacher sent an apology e-mail for not receiving the e-mails that I sent until last this afternoon.  She was out at a meeting and I told her that I knew that.  (She told the kids that they would have a substitute.)  I told her that I thought that it was important for her to be kept in the loop.  Considering that I wrote in K's planner, "No LLI tutoring for K.  Please don't send her."  I was thinking that needed a bit of explanation.

I did find out that it isn't general protocol to meet with parents regarding LLI sessions, but to just go ahead and pull them for reading tutoring.  They send materials home and a letter and the parents find out then.  I think that is a rather flawed way of handling it.

I did end by telling both the tutor on the phone and Mrs. H on e-mail that I am available.  Both Hubs and I are very ready and willing to meet and to do what we need to do to help K.  We are here.  Please contact us or track us down (as in me in the hall every single Thursday) and we will be happy to meet with them to iron out whatever it is going on.

:snarly face:

I wish that it were easier.  A lot easier.  If it was, she wouldn't learn anything.  Learning is good.  Learning is very good.

Monday, February 4, 2013

State mandated testing makes me want to SCREAM!

Test prep for the Ohio Achievement Assessment is underway.  They have been working with the children on math with tutoring sessions in class. Wonderful!  Because my child missed their END OF THIRD GRADE score target of 400 by seven points when the test was given at the BEGINNING OF THIRD GRADE in October, she is now being pulled for Leveled Literacy Intervention to prepare her for the OAA reading portion.

Here's our beef.  No one ever contacted us.  It isn't like I'm not at the school a few days during the week and fully reachable.  Shoot no.  They pulled her out of the classroom, plunked her into tutoring and let us know when she came home announcing that she was told that, "Mom, you are wrong.  I did fail the OAA.  I failed and now I'm in reading tutoring."  I told her that yes, she did miss the end of the third grade year target by 7 points, but she took a test for what she would learn during third grade at the beginning.  (Think Willy Wonka and the teacher saying he was going to give a test on Monday on the material before they had learned it.)

The fact of the matter is that K passed their Third Grade Guarantee.  She did get their required score to move on to the fourth grade.  No biggie.  This year, she has been on merit roll all year.  She has had a B in reading for the entire year.  She is not an advanced reader, but she is an on-target reader.  I can't ask for more than that.

So, Hubs reports that K came home and cried hysterically on the couch for an hour over this tutoring and the fact that she "failed."  Really?  They have to do this with her?  I have about 5 e-mails out to folks including her teacher, the tutor and the principal.  I'm a parent right now.  I'm not the President of the PTA at this moment.  Treat me like the highly involved parent I am.  Give my husband and I the opportunity to be involved with our child and in the decision making process of her having additional tutoring.  The math tutoring she receives pulled her out of social studies and as a result, her grade dropped two whole letter grades from one grading period to the next.

Hubs was willing to go up this afternoon.  I asked that he wait.

I'm mad that this stupid state mandated test has taken over once again and now they want to pull her out of science.  I've e-mailed everyone and told them that she is NOT to be pulled for reading tutoring.  Send me work home to help supplement her learning with.  That's fine.  We can't have her falling back in more grades to get help in others.  Then, all she'll be getting is help because she won't be around for any of the original teaching.


The Weekly Menu- Week 5 and Super Bowl Ad commentary

Sunday/Monday/Tuesday- Homemade Chicken Pot Pie (I have an awards dinner to attend tonight, so my CPP will be for Tuesday.)

Wednesday-  Veggie burger (K eats with the in-law's)

Thursday-  Chicken pizza

Friday/Saturday-  Meatloaf and the fixin's.

Not a creative week.  It's a couple of busy weeks.  Next week should be real good fun!  Meetings in the afternoon and all that.  :S

Super Bowl ads-  I finally stopped watching.  Hardly anything impressed me and the model kissing the dork with the sounds-- it made me want to crawl under the couch.  My kid was sitting next to me!  It was just a bit too much.

To Toyota- I own a RAV.  I've had 2.  Why on earth would you take what is a known feature on a RAV (the side opening back door) and remove it to now be the top opening door?  If I were shopping for a new RAV right now, that would kill the deal for me.  I'm short and I hate hanging from those doors.  That was the original reason we bought the first one.  The back door and the tire were part of the RAV look.  Now you look like every other pedestrian SUV out there.  Way to go.  You were the first to come up with the small SUV (the RAV) and now you are conforming instead of letting everyone else copy you.  Wow.

The Doritos bit (though, I am a Cool Ranch girl) was good.

I was tired of seeing the black label beer.  (Lager, sorry.)

The kid with the expensive car (avoiding branding a bit) was fine, though there were bits that I would have ditched.  It's still not going to get me to buy one of their cars.


Beyonce and the half time show?  Did I miss something?  I told Hubs as we were watching it that it reminded me of the boat scene in the original Willy Wonka.  To me, it was a hard worked train wreck.  But then people are complaining that Alicia Keys took too long to sing the National Anthem.  Hmmm, at least she didn't lip sync it, right?  I had to giggle at the girl talking while swaying behind Jennifer Hudson.  It made me think that K would do that same thing.  Sandy Hook was wonderful.  To start the game out with such a strong musical start and have the half time as what it was-- yikes.

:snarly snarl:

That's my Super Bowl critique.  I know you didn't ask for it and that's okay.  Do share your thoughts.  Neither Hubs or I was impressed, but that doesn't mean that there weren't others out there that may have been.