Everyday someone is bullied whether it be because they are short, long hair, short hair, clothes they wear.. the list could go on and on.
Zeqs had his fair share of being bullied. As we have started this school we have been incident free thus far, and in hopes that it stays that way. But previous years we have not been so lucky.
Remember when I told you he broke his finger and didnt say a word about it.. well yep a boy on playground first pushed him and then tripped him. Said if he told anyone it would be worse. So he didn’t. All because he wore velcro shoes. All over shoes!?!?! Like what kind of world do we live in?
Not all bullying results in physical harm. Since being in middle south we are on our third year of his hoodies being stolen. I’m not talking about one..or even two.. I’m talking in upwards of 20+.. like if you need hoodies man I will buy some extra. But dont take someone’s because you think it would be cool to upset them.
Or how about let’s pick on the kid who can’t write.. he can physically write.. but you can not read it. No it’s not because he goes to fast or doesnt try. Believe me when have done therapies, a special education teacher even said.. I have kids who dont want, or refuse to try tell us.. no he really cant. He can write his name, and if you try really hard you can make out some of the words. But you tell him to tell you what it says, and he can word by word and point to them. So maybe he sees it just fine.
Kids will be kids they say. Of course they will. They will pick they will fight. No problem with that one. But dont do it intentionally to someone who doesn’t understand.
Then you think it’s the worst when kids bully another kid..?!?! Oh it gets worse.
You worst nightmare.. a teacher bullies your child.. yep a teacher. I know what your thinking no way no how.. oh it happened. He was in fifth grade.. doing math test.. they took away his multiplication chart(in his iep to use) didnt read the questions(also in iep). So he doesnt get the test done.. ok.. we will work on it. Off to lunch he goes.. nope walks to sit down.. teacher looks at him says nope not today go sit at this table your doing your test… excuse me?!?! So I front of lunch room, he sits with another child who also has pretty much same iep… has to take a test. Not verbally or with use of a chart. But does it. Goes to erase one he had another answer for and his test is taken away. Then lunch is over and goes about his day. So when picking up from school was approached secretly by teacher, not one but 3 teachers who quickly tell me to call them on personal phone.. I did.. they tell me what happens.. because he won’t probably tell me. I was informed to call school and call an emergency iep. When I called to schedule the personal who schedules said she thanked God I called. We had our meeting, jaws dropped. This teacher believed she could do this because the reality is who would believe a disabled child over a trained provider.. well I would believe my child!!! I am his voice. She began talking at this meeting, I quickly stopped her and said it is my turn to talk. Principal and all the other members as well as said teacher apologized to us and our family. I looked at her and told her we aren’t the ones you should be apologizing too.
Fast forward a year. First year of middle school is hard enough, then you are given a teacher who makes it worse. One particular day at lunch time they can choose to do some homework or have extra help after they eat. So Zequal had a missing assignment and was told to come to stallion time during lunch. Ok he goes to lunch and eats.. no problem. Well I guess he took too long eating and as she said wasted her time.. so she gives him weeks lunch detention.. and makes him call me.. I get on phone. He tells me and ask if he is going to be in trouble at home.. I ask why he didnt go..he said mom I was eating. I said ok. Told him not to worry about it.
But that’s the reality! That’s Zequals reality. The reality of bullies is they believe no one will ever believe a disabled child because they are simply disabled! But bullies could learn a lot from people like Zequal because at the end of the day all the stuff you do to him. He still doesnt hate them. He doesnt plan his revenge . He doesnt go to school next day and punch them or be mean to them. He goes to school the next day the same way as the previous day. He doesnt say a word, because he has no words he doesnt understand.
That is why I am now and will forever be.. his voice. As well as the voice to all those who dont have one. Disabled kids are no different. They are not weird, they are not dumb. They ARE some of the funniest, polite,most passionate,creative, smart people you will ever meet in your life!! People in the world can learn tremendous amounts from them if they would just take a few minutes to listen to them.
So when you send your kid to school or when you go to school to teach. Remember even Einstein was a little shy and awkward at times.