Trust does not come easily, and trusting your child with special needs to others can be enormously difficult.
Though it is not explicitly set forth in the laws governing special education, it is the foundation that can have the power to build and destroy relationships between parents and school districts.
I have to trust you will be kind and patient with my daughter, and treat her as you might your own child.
I have to trust you will pave the way for inclusion for my child, and encourage her peers to spend time and play with her.
I have to trust you will ensure my daughter is safe, that she does not wander away and become lost.
I have to trust you will help my daughter at snack and lunch, open her juice and help to feed her, so she doesn’t go hungry.
I have to trust you will discreetly help her in the bathroom, too, and ensure her dignity all the while.
I have to trust you will advocate for the needs of my child, in the face of pressure to do the opposite.
I’m supposed to trust that you will not deny the services my daughter requires and that are guaranteed by law.
I’m supposed to trust that planning and placement teams (PPTs) are a level playing field, but I have experienced a vastly different process.
You can trust me that it takes an infinite amount of faith to entrust you with my daughter, whom I hold so dear.
You can trust me that your actions or failure to act on my daughter’s behalf can shatter my trust in you in an instant, and once lost, it cannot be regained.
You can trust me that I will do everything within my power to advocate for my daughter, and I hope you will assist me in that endeavor.
You can trust me that what matters is not the number that comprises my daughter’s IQ, but rather the number of times she is treated with kindness, sensitivity and respect.
You can trust me that my daughter and others like her can enrich your life in ways you may never have imagined.
You can trust me that despite the stream of obstacles that line my daughter’s path, her future can and will be amazing.
You can trust me that my daughter can have an enormous impact on your life, may her brightness reach you and help guide you.
You can trust me that my daughter can teach you, too. I believe you can learn compassion and understanding and many other important, invaluable life lessons from her.
I have to trust you that when I am no longer able to care for my daughter, you will have prepared her for independence, and that she will be OK.
And that takes an immeasurable amount of trust.
The Mighty is asking the following: Share with us an unexpected moment with a teacher, parent or student during your (or your loved one’s) school year. If you’d like to participate, please send a blog post to [email protected] Please include a photo for the piece, a photo of yourself and 1-2 sentence bio. Check out our Submit a Story page for more about our submission guidelines.
Lead photo source: Thinkstock Images