Interestingly, I found that I did not have to look far to find ethical breaches as temptation lurks around every corner. High schools seem to be a fertile environment for behaviors that are questionable from parents, students and staff member. I often say that the greatest challenge in the High School arena is not the students but their parents. Of the three situations below, two involve parents defending their students at all cost, they believe they are working in the students best interest but they do not have the foresight to realize that by not allowing their children to face challenges or suffer consequences they re hindering their spiritual and social development.
The parent of a graduating senior with Turrets syndrome, labeled as an Exceptional Student Education (ESE) student was in the process of enrolling her younger son into 9th grade. However, he did not meet the guidelines set by the State for ESE. When informed by the ESE Director that her son would have to take regular courses, she became irate and began screaming obscenities in the front office of the High School. I noticed the commotion and as I knew the parent as a volunteer. I decided to intervene, I ask her to come into my office so we could discuss the matter. If I didn’t, I knew the next step would have been a call to the School Resource Officer (SRO) to remove her from the campus. She had previous sued the school for another issue and I did not want things to get out of hand.
We spoke in my office and she was concerned that her son would be left behind if he was not allowed the same services he received in middle school with extended time for assignment and privacy during test. I tried to no avail, to relay to her that our school is a caring environment and if her son was having difficulties when he arrived in the Fall I would personally speak to the Director about reviewing his file. I also tried convincing her that there was no need to blow the situation out of proportion as the school year hadn’t started as yet and his courses weren’t picked. Maybe we could have hand-picked his teachers or provided some other compromise.
She eventually calmed down, but left my office visibly upset. While discussing the issue with an Assistant Principal and the ESE Director, I found out that she needed her son to qualify for Social Security Insurance (SSI) for income and that was the reason she was distraught. Ultimately, as her request for services had nothing to do with her son’s needs, it should not be granted. A few days later, we received a call from the District Office, requesting that we retest the son, obviously they did not want to deal with the issue and did what most School District do try to put salve on situations instead of getting to the root of the problem.
This issue has not been resolved! However, I am confident that this parent will get her way as most do further corrupting the system. I believe School Districts should defend school based...