Monday, November 20, 2006

How many educators does it take to make you emotionally disturbed?

The other day I participated in a meeting in which we (the school psych, two special ed teachers, a general ed teacher and the assistant principal) decided that a student was emotionally disturbed. The student met the qualifications set by the district for this label. Now the student can work with me on improving his/her behavior in school. This was the 3rd of three meetings we held - none of which the parent attended though the parent told us she/he would attend all of them. So the five of use sat together and determined that this student is no longer learning disabled but emotionally disturbed. Why did I agree? It was going to happen either way because I wasn't a required member of the team. And I actually think we're going to help this student now. Or more specifically, I'm going to help this student now. His previous casemanager was useless. So when we hear that someone is emotionally disturbed or autistic or retarded or learning disabled we need to remember that it's just a little group of people who sit around and decide that it's so.

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