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Exe 100 Extra Credit

May 2, 2015

Exe Interview 100

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Interview with Jennifer Cadilline that has
Topic: Public Schools.

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1. How did you find out if you were eligible for special education in your public middle school when you were younger?

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My mom had asked the school to evaluate me, so she called or wrote the director of special education, even the principal of my school and had to describe the concerns that she had with the my academic performance and she even requested an evaluation under IDEA, to see if a disability was even involved in the first place just to make sure. My public school was concerned about how I was learning and developing. Since the school and my mother thought I had a the disability, they evaluated me but the best part about it for my mother was that it didn't cost me anything to check. They asked my mom for her written consent before they had evaluated me.
Just because my mom had asked didn't mean they had to do it. They could have said no, but they would have had to explain to my mother why they wouldn't want to do so.

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2. What would have happened if you were not eligible for special education in your public school
, how would you have felt ?

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If the public school would have came up with the conclusion that i was not eligible for special education, the school system would have gave me that reasoning as to why I wasn't found
“eligible.” At first that did happen but under IDEA, and they gave my mother the information as to what she can do to basically since she disagreed with the decision they had made. Either way no one wants to be disabled so if they were to tell me that knowing I had the issue I wouldn't have received the help I got today. And if they did, I would feel bad, but I would know that I am only getting better.

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3. Did your mom ever disagree with the public school about what was right for you when it came down to having special needs?

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Sometimes she did, but she did have the right to disagree with the certain decisions the school had made concerning me. For example, being titled a child with a disability, my evaluation process and even the services they had given to me at a point. Even though my mom and my public school had certain disagreements , it was important that they both stated their concerns for me and try to reach a solution. And sometimes the decisions my mom or the school made were only temporary at times. Another example that happened was that my mom agreed with a classroom placement for me for a little while and towards the end the school checked my progress to see how good I have done. My mom attended a IEP meeting and spoke on talk on

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May 2, 2015

how I is doing, how much I progressed and decided what steps I should take next to move forward. Sometimes she would speak up and not agree with the school, Good thing was there was always a way for them to resolve the disagreements. At any point in time, as many times as my mom disagreed, she could have stopped all of the special education and related services for me without having to go to a meeting, or even complaining to the head of it all.

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4. What happened during your evaluation in your public school, how did that go about ?
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When I entered they basically evaluated me in more than one area, just to make sure there wasn't any other possible places I was disabled. They wanted to check my health, how social I was with other students, my vision, how intelligent I was, my hearing, and how my body language was around others. The evaluation had to be me all alone by myself, but well enough to tell if had a disability or not and they had to identify all of my needs for special education and related services just to make sure. They looked at information about my past and old health issues I had.
They looked at my scores on tests that had already been given in the classroom to the students in my grade and asked for opinions from my teachers and then asked my mom for how she felt and what she was concerned about. It was pretty frustrating knowing I had adhd, but I accepted the fact that I did and received the help.

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5. 8. How was your eligibility for special education decided, and also how did that go ?
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Like I said earlier, the decision about my eligibility for special education services were based on whether or not I had fit into the IDEA’s 13 disability categories. This decision was made after I had completed the evaluation, since thats what everything depended on. My mom was such an amazing help when it came down to making sure I had everything I needed and made sure I had gotten all help possible. There was a team that looked at all of the information we gathered during this 60 day process and had decided that I was a “child with a disability” and they told me
I was eligible for the special education and related services. My mom and the school worked together and made programs for me which helped me out a lot.

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Exe 100 Extra Credit

May 2, 2015
Written Analysis

I learned to never judge a book by it’s cover speaking with someone who has disabilities and difficulties in general classrooms because by far Jennifer speaks as though she is the smartest person in the world. She spoke very well during this interview with her and I was very happy to see that not everyone needs to look or sound as of they have disabilities, It is all in the brain. She started off by describing exactly how it affected her physically. She has down syndrome making it a lot more harder for her to focus on her work and do the same thing other kids can do. She explained to me also how she has same difficulty gaining weight that others have in losing it.
She spoke about how clear it was clear that there was something different about her when she was just a new born, but she wasn't fully diagnosed until she was only one years old. She also told me how there’s no treatment or medicine or anything for it exactly what I learned in my
EXE 100 class, to maintain a healthy body she eats healthy foods, she exercises so that she doesn't get sick. Just like she told me during the interview she explained how her mom went hard for her in every possible way. Her mother made sure she took every precaution possible. Which is why she had put her in for a physical, speech and occupational therapies and specialists, therapists and good doctors, just to make sure.
Jennifer had gotten older and explained to me how things became way more tougher for her.
She explained to me that sometimes the stairs were difficult to climb at school and even on public transportation at times. Listening to this made me appreciate things much more than I do now. She had to be careful of the sicknesses of the other kids at school, how much the doors weighed, carrying her books. Even trying to understand teachers and kids outside. She was offered an aide but didn't want to seem fully disabled, so she denied it. She wanted to become

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stronger and not have people push her around as if she were weak. She told me she had a feeling she was different from the other kids at the age of 7 because no one really wanted to play with her. What kind of insight did this person’s responses provide you with into both the topic and themselves? I noticed that listening to her I realized that public schools have taken special education more seriously because back then it was never that serious. If a child was to even act up there were automatically put into special education classes separated from everyone else, which I didn't think was much help at all. I was reading an article called Special Education for
Students with Disabilities: Analysis and Recommendations and it even stated that back in the days some weren't enrolled at all and some enrolled for nothing. “As recently as 1973, at least one million students were denied enrollment in public schools solely on the basis of their disabilities, and at least two million others were not receiving an education appropriate to their needs.1 Although every state has provided some form of special education throughout this century, these services were largely at the discretion of local school districts. Only since a federal court case in 19722 and the passage of federal legislation in 19753 have all states been mandated to provide a free, appropriate public education to all students with disabilities.”( Donna L.
Terman,1) As I began reading more articles and journals I realized many of them had felt the same way and discussed how back then things were not fair to every child with disabilities.”Before 1975, more than a million students with disabilities were excluded from schools and some 3.5 million did not receive appropriate services. That year, Congress passed the Education for All Handicapped Children Act, now called the Individuals With Disabilities
Act of 1990. Students identified as disabled have since been guaranteed access to what the law calls a "free appropriate public education," and their parents have the right to participate in (and

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May 2, 2015

dispute) the school's development of an annual "individualized education program" for their child. (Freedman, 1) Gladly, times have changed and certain laws have passed, many students with special needs have received more opportunities than ever before getting jobs, receiving the right education, even receiving scholarships. “ In Florida, for example, more than 22,000 students with disabilities receive McKay Scholarships to attend private schools at a per-student cost to the government that averaged $7,220 in 2010–11. But what about the private schools that participate in voucher programs open to all low-income families, such as those in Milwaukee,
Cleveland, New Orleans, and Washington, D.C.?” (Wolf, 1) Today a lot of little things still a occur that may not be fair to children with disabilities and there a problems today that we are still not solving. “students who should be classified as having a disability and eligible for services that support and assist them often aren’t. In my school, the most common reason is a lack of parental consent. And so the years go by, and students slip further and further behind, struck down daily by the barriers that have not been adequately evaluated. The special education system fails these kids; the referral and evaluation process relies too heavily on parent advocacy and participation, and those students who are unlucky enough not to have those assets lose out.” (Klein 1) Unfortunately without a parent at all its pretty difficult, so for Jessica’s mom to be there throughout everything she was pretty lucky. “Many parents have difficulty navigating the personal interactions and procedural requirements involved in challenging a school’s special education determination. This gap in parental ability may stem from an inability to interface effectively with authority figures. As discussed briefly above, the current structure of public education encourages parents to defer on issues of special education, largely because parents who send their children to public schools often delegate decision making on questions of

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May 2, 2015

curriculum, evaluation, and behavior to school officials.”( Phillips,31) So when there are parents with this issue, they must come forth and take responsibility due to the strictness of the public schools not taking on with the situation to help out a student. As I did the interview and spoke to someone with this disability I realized that no matter the type of person, whether they have diabilites or not there are lessons to be learned from them as well. Adults and children with disabilities go through every day with determination and strength not letting anything getting in their way. I was born with asthma, so not being able to do something at a young age and taking on a challenge isn't easy. I am claimed to have a disability as well, but not as serious as having down syndrome or any other issues like being in a wheelchair, which gives me reasons to appreciate life. Not being able to play a sport or run without breathing is very difficult, so I could just imagine how serious other disabilities can be. I also learned through my experience of having asthma and listening to Jessica’s story about having down syndrome that when you have these issues , there is a whole new level of patience that is required. Unfortunately, we have to wait longer for all types of things for example being going back to my normal breathing, but over time we become masters at taking on this challenge. Patience has even helped me emotionally get over my physical capabilities of not being able to breath and jessica not being able to hold weight of a door or comprehend a teacher but it all comes with time and practice makes perfect.
Which makes us fight to make us stronger. Anyone with a disabilities or anything close to having a certain disability learn so much throughout their lives, but mainly teaches life lessons to those who are can use every part of their body to appreciate it.

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Exe 100 Extra Credit

May 2, 2015
Bibliography

1) Terman, Donna L., Mary B. Larner, Carol S. Stevenson, and Richard E. Behrman. "Special
Education for Students with Disabilities: Analysis and Recommendations." The Future of
Children 6.1 (1996): 4. Web.

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2) Freedman, Miriam Kurtzig. "'Mainstreaming' Special-Ed Students Needs Debate." The Wall
Street Journal (2013): 1. Web. 4 Aug. 2013.

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3) Wolf, Patrick J., John F. Witte, and David J. Fleming. "Special Choices." Education NEXT
12.3 (2012): 1-3. Web. Summer 2012.

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4) Klein, Laura. "The Special Education Problems We Aren't Solving." School Book (2012): n. pag. Web. 23 July 2012.

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5) Phillips, Erin. "When Parents Aren't Enough: External Advocacy in Special Education." The
Yale Law Journal 117.8 (2008): 1802. Web.

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