Friday, June 13, 2014

Orange and Pink: Stirring Things Up

I wish those of you who aren't could be a part of the discussion on my Facebook page about an article I posted today called Why Do President Obama's children go to a segregated school? Here's the link, and I'd love to hear what you think. I'll start you off with the same thing that I said when I posted it. As soon as I get their permission, I might post some of the other comments because they're incredibly enlightening -- on both sides of the debate.

Please read and think about it. And if you have children in a private school, let me know if your children have any classmates with disabilities.
Not one of Sidwell Friends School’s more than 1,100 students has a physical disability.                                       


  1. I'm not necessarily in favor of inclusion. I think it should be individualized. Katie did very poorly when she was in a more inclusive school. By poorly, I mean it was horrendous. She doesn't do well with transitions. It was a nightmare. She spent most of her school life in public school but in segregated classrooms where there was reverse integration, the regular kids came into her classroom and volunteered their time with the disabled kids. This is what worked for Katie but I know it doesn't work for other disabled kids.

    School boards like to make broad strokes but disabled kids are individuals. Inclusion or segregation doesn't work for everyone, there needs to be flexibility and open mindedness.

  2. President Obama sends his children to the best school for them, just as most of us strive to do. You have your daughter is a school, a public one, that your other two do not attend. Why is Sophie in that school, and not Oliver? A school that cannot meet your delightful and intrepid son's needs to the point that you remove him from it, likely isn't meeting your daughter's either, but she is not able to communicate this and make you miserable enough to remove her and to home school her. Also, I'm sure Henry's school does NOT take cognitively disabled students,and check out the % of physically disabled kids there too, and how accessible that school is. My son's private school(s) did have physically disabled kids, and did make accommodations for them, but gave ZERO alllowace for cognitive handicaps. Kids like Sophie or Oliver need not even apply.

  3. c -- Thank you for your comment although I'm not sure what your point is other than some projections of what I am and am not doing as far as my own children's schooling. Sophie is in high school, so Oliver would not be going there, yet, anyway. And precisely because his school did not meet his needs is the reason why I pulled him out. Yes, Henry is going to parochial school and I hate that parochial schools don't accept children with cognitive disabilities -- I'm very conflicted about that. The discussion I referred to on Facebook is a free-rambling one with many different viewpoints expressed. My feeling is that how we educate our children -- both disabled and "typical" -- is very much indicative of how we view as a culture, the disabled. And it's not good.

  4. Not pointing fingers here, Elizabeth. Not at Obama or at you. A number of mine went a number of years to Catholic schools that would NOT accept children with mental, behaviorial disabilities, though, yes, they did accept those with physical ones, and did attempt to meet their needs, albeit not always adequately. I doubt a deaf or blind child would have been accepted. Kids with ambulatory handicaps, medical conditions such as diabetes, CP, and yes, epilepsy were, as long as they could handle the academic fare. That seemed to be the driving issue in terms of admissions, intellectual ability. Some of the schools discriminated against more than half the human race in that not only were intellectually handicapped kids not considered, nor were females. A bit archaic, but the schools were the best fit for some of my kids. I know a number of kids who have siblings that were excluded for any number of reasons from the school, but it did not stop the family from enrolling the kid accepted because it was the best school for that kid accepted. And I am conflicted as are a number of the parents, even as we right the hefty check to send our children there having gone through a difficult process to get our kids in there.



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