Showing posts from April, 2015

Officials Warn That Scores to Decline - The Missourian: Union

Our School Board Wasn't Elected By Knowledgeable Voters

Our school board is not elected because of the great job that they are doing.  They are elected because they line up early on the first day that candidates can declare and get their names on the top of the ballot.  Candidates that are at the door and sit in the cold don't get their names on the ballot first.  It is the candidates that arrived early and sat in their warm cars and waited for the doors to be unlocked.

The voters of this city don't research before they vote.  They just vote for the first names on the ballot.  They don't understand how important it is to have an objective board that is working for the students.  It seems people do little to no research when they vote.  The article below will tell the story.

Oh, if you happen to get votes a district employee will just strike it up to you being a woman.  Whatever that means.

Martin, the district's autism education specialist, says the close election results aren't cause to believe that other pa…

Stop Bullying | Eric Schmitt

Stop Bullying | Eric Schmitt

We Need Your Help“The Senate has unanimously passed the
anti-bullying bill that will help protect so many Missouri children from
emotional, physical, and cyber bullying. Now we need your help to tell
the House to pass it. Sign up on this page to show your support for
ending bullying in Missouri! Thank you for doing your part.” - Senator Eric Schmitt

Candidate for Missouri Treasurer

Positive Behavior Intervention and Support (PBIS) for Students with ASD - West Palm Beach Autism & Education |

Positive Behavior Intervention and Support (PBIS) for Students with ASD - West Palm Beach Autism & Education |

It is hard to get districts to do this in the right way.  I know that Lee's Summit rarely does and it is not in accordance with proven guidelines.

The problem behaviors of children with autism spectrum disorder
(ASD) are among the most challenging and stressful issues faced by
schools and parents. The current best practice in addressing and
preventing undesirable or challenging behaviors utilizes the principles
and practices of positive behavior intervention and support (PBIS). PBIS
is not a specific intervention per se, but rather a set of
research-based strategies that are intended to decrease problem
behaviors by designing effective environments and teaching students the
appropriate social and communication skills needed to achieve social,
emotional and academic success. The objective of PBIS is to decrease
potentially problematic behavior b…

Exploring the Paths of Missouri’s Special Education: A Study | KBIA

Exploring the Paths of Missouri’s Special Education: A Study | KBIA

It shouldn't matter if it is a rural school or a rich suburban school.  In fact, the rich suburban school rarely provides the education that a special education student needs and only caters to advanced students.

 But inclusion isn’t actually written into the law. Instead, schools
are required to provide a free, appropriate education in a least
restrictive environment. But what’s appropriate? What’s restrictive?

The answer- it depends. The state, school district, or the parents define these terms.

Dr. George Giuliani is the executive director at the National
Association of Special Education Teachers. He said understanding the
definition of least restrictive environment comes down to the child.

“It’s the requirement that children with disabilities must be
educated with those without disabilities to the maximum extent that it
is appropriate for that particular child,” Giuliani said.

He said the concept of “fre…

Schools Warned On Pushing Families Into Due Process - Disability Scoop

Schools Warned On Pushing Families Into Due Process - Disability Scoop

Lee's Summit has a history of forcing parents into due process.  Families are forced to hire attorney and spend tens of thousands of dollars and then they lose.  They don't lose because their cases aren't good.  They lose because the hearing panel hasn't ruled in favor in families for three years.  They system is corrupt.  

Here is what Jerry Keimig told OSEP when I turned to them for help.  He welcomed me to file due process.  He knew that I wouldn't win even though the district was out of compliance.

"We would welcome an opportunity to present the district view to an independent
panel either through a DESE child complaint or a due process hearing."

Federal education officials are warning school districts to think
twice before forcing parents into potentially long and costly due
process proceedings.

Under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act, families may
pursue due process o…

Volunteer fired, head coach resigns amid disparaging comments | Education | Lee's Summit Journal

Volunteer fired, head coach resigns amid disparaging comments | Education | Lee's Summit Journal

Pam Smiley, a volunteer track and field coach at Lee’s
Summit High School, fought back tears as she tried to relay why she
thought she was let go off her duties.

Earlier Wednesday, Smiley
was told by administrators at the school that a decision by track and
field head coach Karen Sanders to relieve Smiley off her duties as
sprint coach would stand.

Smiley alleges – and a group of track
athletes at the school concur – that Sanders told her last week the only
reason some minority members of the team were having successful track
seasons was because Smiley was African-American and the athletes could
relate to her.

Smiley said she was appalled by the assertion, as were parents of some of the athletes who heard Sanders repeat the remark.

Sanders, who was unavailable for comment, resigned from her position Wednesday.

Wilkinson, a teacher at Pleasant Lea Middle Scho…

Lee's Summit High School track coach says she was fired with a 'racist text' from head coach - +

Lee's Summit High School track coach says she was fired with a 'racist text' from head coach - +

A volunteer track coach was relieved of her duties after she said
the head coach sent her a racist text message informing her of her
removal.  Pam Smiley ran track for Wisconsin
and has coached in some capacity for 16 years. She decided to volunteer
as an assistant this year at Lee's Summit High School where her
daughter runs on the team as a freshman.  Smiley said she was stunned when she received the following text message from head coach Karen Sanders on Sunday: "When a coach on my staff breaks a rule and doesn't see it as wrong,
and also brings in other coaches as being responsible for breaking the
rule, which they were not, I have a hard time letting that coach
continue being part of my staff. Pleas turn in your coach's shirt and
jacket to the office and I will get it from them. Your skin does deem
you untrustworthy!" Sanders …

This Bill Will Hurt Disabled Students

Our district is sending out mass emails to their patrons trying to convince them that this bill should be passed.  It is not in the best interest of students for this bill to become law. 

Section 213.065 RSMO of the Missouri Human Rights Act that since April of 2012 has been used to protect children in schools. In the Doe Subia v. the Kansas City Missouri School District case on Appeal, the courts determined that Schools are Places of Public Accommodations and that just as adults are protected from sexual harassment in the workplace (and all other protected categories listed in the MHRA) so are children protected in schools.

HB 1019 has been promoted as an Employment Discrimination Bill but that is only part of the application of that law. This law protects disabled students too, who are bullied at a 50% higher rate than non-disabled children. After reading this research and article below it seems very unfair that disabled students, who are already at a distinct disad…

Schools must embrace the power of parents | EdSource

Schools must embrace the power of parents | EdSource

I wish that Missouri would do this.  Our system is far more damaged and corrupt than California's is.  Our district won't even let parents on the committees that make decisions.

The fifth anniversary of California’s parent trigger law, the ascent
of national advocacy groups like MomsRising and parents posting their
political views on everything from Common Core to the merits of schools
vaccinations raises the question – have we reached the age of parent

As my own mother might say, the proof is in the pudding.

We certainly may have opened doors for parents to wield more
influence in schools. The spread of parent empowerment laws like the
Local Control Funding Formula support this fact. We’ve also even seen
greater attempts from districts to engage parents within public schools
through parent advisory boards and hiring committees.

However, setting the table for parents to get involved is one thing.
Genuinely inviting…

Students' Race Affects How Teachers Judge Misbehavior, Study Says - Teaching Now - Education Week Teacher

Parents angered over discrimination in schools |

Parents angered over discrimination in schools |

Many parents of students at Lee's Summit North High School in
Missouri are angry after discovering that their children were victims of
racism. The principal of the school, David Ulrich, allegedly sent
letters to parents regarding low standardized test scores, which
according to the school's data, "consistently reveal a significant gap
between the overall achievement of the school and our African-American
students.” The parents who did receive the letter were asked to attend a
meeting regarding the low test scores. Ironically, the letters were
only sent to parents of African-American students, regardless of their
test scores. However, parents of non-Black students who did receive low
scores did not receive any notification about the matter.

District Diversity Consultant and the school's counselor, who are both
Black, agreed with Ulrich's decision to notify the parents and invited
them to a…

Parents call Lee’s Summit track coach’s comments derogatory, demand resignation |

Parents call Lee’s Summit track coach’s comments derogatory, demand resignation |

parents say their daughters want to quit the track team because the
kids overheard their white head coach tell the assistant black coach
that she’s only relatable to the black students because she’s black.

“There’s not room for racism. We live in a racially diverse community, and there’s no room for that,” Heather Hays said.

girls raised their hands on Monday, saying that last Friday their head
coach told them the only reason they relate to the black coach is
because she’s black.

“On the track team we relate to her because she’s a good coach. When
she said that a Caucasian student says I relate to her too, what does
that say about me?” Breanna May said.

The Lee’s Summit School District says officials have been made aware
of concerns from parents and they are investigating those concerns.

“I think she crossed the line,” said Kim Smith.

Parents say the coach should step down.

Substitute teacher accused of hitting, choking third-grade students |

Substitute teacher accused of hitting, choking third-grade students |

INDEPENDENCE, Mo – Parents in Independence say their third-graders were hit and choked by their substitute teacher on Friday.

Now their kids say they’re afraid to go back to school.

Officials with the Independence School District confirm that the
unidentified substitute was escorted from Spring Branch Elementary on
Friday after a 9-year-old ran from his class, saying he had been choked.
Officials would only add at that this is an ongoing investigation at
this point.

FOX 4 talked to the 9 year old on Saturday. He says the substitute started attacking him as he was taking a spelling quiz.

was hurting me,” said the visibly shaken third grader, whose identity
is being kept private. “He hit me with a piece of paper, then with his
hand then with his fist. Right after that he choked me.”

The boy says he started crying and the substitute finally let go.

Parents allege that a total of eight kids were at…

Restraint And Seclusion Mandate Advances In Senate - Disability Scoop

Restraint And Seclusion Mandate Advances In Senate - Disability Scoop

A plan to rewrite the nation’s primary education law is set to go
before the U.S. Senate and it now includes a provision related to
restraint and seclusion in schools.

The Senate’s Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee
unanimously approved a bill Thursday to reauthorize the Elementary and
Secondary Education Act. The bill now heads to the full Senate where it
is expected to be considered this spring.

Tucked in the bill is an amendment requiring states to put policies
in place to prevent “any physical restraint or seclusion imposed solely
for purposes of discipline or convenience.” While many states already
have policies on the issue, not all do,
and federal efforts to regulate the practices — which research shows
disproportionately affect students with disabilities — have stagnated. (Read all of Disability Scoop’s coverage of restraint and seclusion »)

“The facts tell us that locking kids up in p…

Lee's Summit R-7 School District: BULLYING AND SUICIDE LAWSUITS

Former Student Sues School For Bullying Harassment |

Former Student Sues School For Bullying Harassment |

A recent high school graduate
in Kansas has filed a lawsuit against the school district alleging that
school officials failed to protect him from bullying and harrassment he
suffered due to his perceived sexual orientation, reports

lawsuit filed by the unidentified man, who graduated from Blue Valley
High School in 2010, states, "Fellow male students repeatedly assault
(the plaintiff) in the school locker room and shower, such as rubbing
against him, nude, in the shower in a sexually aggressive manner,
pulling down his pants, exposing his genitals to other students,
snapping him on the buttocks with towels and spraying a full shampoo
bottle of urine on him while in the locker room shower."

KCTV reports "the graduate is suing the district,
principals, vice principals and other district employees. According to
the lawsuit, the young man attended Overland Trail Middle School from

Are Bullying Lawsuits on the Rise? - Law and Daily Life

Are Bullying Lawsuits on the Rise? - Law and Daily Life

Are bullying lawsuits on the rise? Parents
and teachers everywhere have become more aware of the dangers of
bullying and cyberbullying in both the classroom and on the Internet.

Many parents are now turning to the law to try to ensure their children's safety and welfare.

In turn, it seems that the number of bullying lawsuits filed in court is on the rise.

While there aren't any hard
and fast statistics about the number of bullying lawsuits, the General
Counsel for the National School Boards Association, Francisco Negron,
says that "anecdotal evidence shows an obvious increase," USA Today reports.

One bullying lawsuit centers on the tragic case of Jon Carmichael.
Jon was only 13-years-old when he committed suicide, which his parents
believe was spurred by bullying. After his death, his parents, Jon
Timothy and Tani Carmichael, filed a $20 mill…

New Jersey Student Sues School Districts Over Alleged Bullying

New Jersey Student Sues School Districts Over Alleged Bullying

A New Jersey teenager is suing two local school districts
for not doing more to stop the relentless bullying he allegedly endured
from fourth grade until high school, the Hunterdon County Democrat

Brian Cige, an attorney for the student, told the news outlet that his client was bullied by both students and some school employees. The cruelty the teenager encountered is said to have included incidents of "pantsing," speculation over his sexual orientation and cyber bullying through Facebook.

Cige is arguing that the school districts are liable for not having done more to stop this behavior.

Visit for more details about the lawsuit.

Though there aren't hard statistics on how frequently lawsuits grow out of bullying incidents, USA Today previously reported that such cases have grown more common in recent years.

attorney, for example, told the news outlet that he processed between
60 a…

Minn. school district settles bullying lawsuits | Fox News

Minn. school district settles bullying lawsuits | Fox News

COON RAPIDS, Minn. –  Minnesota's
largest school district on Monday voted to settle a pair of lawsuits
over a policy that was criticized for failing to protect gay students
from bullying.

The Anoka-Hennepin School Board
approved the settlement 5-1 at its meeting Monday evening. The district
agreed to a long list of measures to help prevent and address sex-based
harassment at its middle and high schools, including hiring consultants
and working with federal authorities to ensure the district complies
with the terms. The district's insurance carrier will pay the six
current and former students named in the lawsuits a total of $270,000,
and the district will tap about $500,000 of its own funds to implement
the agreement.

Superintendent Dennis Carlson told
reporters the agreement "helps us move forward as a district to a better
day for all students. When we have finished this pr…



In Minnesota this year, two eighth-grade girls hanged themselves together and
left suicide notes. They were best friends, and one reportedly had been
bullied and had been expelled from school for defending her friend in a
fight at school.  Reports did not disclose whether personal injury
lawsuits are planned in connection with those deaths. In a Houston-area case, the parents of an eighth-grader who shot himself to death last year filed a personal injury lawsuit against the school district, alleging that he was bullied at the school, in part because he was gay. As the Rutgers case shows, a suicide
resulting from bullying can lead not only to a personal injury lawsuit
but also to a criminal charge.  That case is not unique.  Recently five
teens in Massachusetts pleaded guilty to charges that they had bullied a 15-year-old girl who had hanged herself.    It remains to be seen whether or not personal injury lawsuits will result from the girl’s death. Such…

#IWishMyTeacherKnew Reveals the Untold Story of Underprivileged Children at School

Withholding Recess as a Punishment Declines - Education Week

Bernard Campbell Middle School Student Bullied Into Suicide Watch

I received the following email from a mother that is in fear for her child's life.  No child should be afraid to go to school.  My son was psychologically bullied until he dropped out.  It was the adults that bulled my son.