Readers overwhelmingly feel contract negotiations between and the Teachers Union should include provisions in regular classrooms.
Of the 220 people who responded, 211 want to see the teachers bargain over this issue while nine were opposed. The story which spawned this article drew 57 comments from readers but the story published with the poll drew only three comments.
All of those comments supported the needs of special education students though Mara Meyer took exception to the poll question itself. She believes the resources regular education teachers get in their classroom for students with special needs is inadequate.
“The issue is not the placement of students with special needs in the general education classroom,” Meyer wrote. “The issue is the amount of support these students and the general education teachers are receiving with a skeleton crew. This District has a long history of avoiding the obvious necessities of the students in need of instructional support.”
As reported earlier in Patch, contends students with special needs are identified early in their educational journey and what they need for a good education is provided.
Robyn Whiteman supports the teachers’ position because she wants the best possible education for all students whether they are gifted, average or special needs.
“When we understand this, we can begin to see that what the teachers are asking for is not excessive; it is a gift” Whiteman writes. “It is a gift by wanting to teach them that they all matter, that they all have a chance to be their highest potential, and that they all fit in this world.”
Bob Mavet complains the administration is putting too much focus in gifted students at the expense of others. He hopes making special needs part of contract negotiations will benefit those who need services.
“This should be a topic of discussion in the course of negotiations between teachers and the district,” Mavet writes. “The teachers are professionals dedicated to providing proper services to ALL students and should not cater to board members who support shifting dollars away from special ed to gifted students.”