The other night I had a meeting to go to -- a Special Education Citizens' Advisory Committee meeting at the local level. (I'm co-Vice Chair this year after two years of being Vice Chair.) I don't mind the meetings, the position, or the work, but I do mind evening meetings. I don't have a day job -- heck, I don't have any paying job -- so I have lots more free time while my kids are at school. Anyway, not the point. The meeting went well; 14 people were in attendance, which is a phenomenal number for a summer meeting. Of course, six of them were officers, but eight weren't, so still a phenomenal number in my book! What I still find interesting is that 10 of the 14 are parents of children with an Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD). This percentage is down from last month, when nine of 10 attendees were parents of children with ASDs but is in keeping with the percentages over the past 2-3 years. Surely there's some meaning there! Why would so many people from this group join the CAC if they felt that their children's educational needs were being met? They wouldn't. Therefore, we have to say that this group is so disproportionately represented because the educational needs of children with ASDs in this county are not being met.
Our Board of Education and Superintendent are very, very fond of saying that we're moving from good to great (and sometimes from great to excellent!). I have to say that you have to get to good before you can get to great, and we have some serious work to do to get to good in our Department of Special Education and in our Department of Gifted Instruction.