Dear Governor Mary Fallin:
Your lack of funding for education is leaving children behind. It is impacting their future. I live in Mustang School District. I chose my home based on the school districts past performance. I have two children who attend MPS. While both of my kids have been affected by the lack of funds, one of my children’s future is now being impacted.
My daughter is 7. She is in the special education program and has been attending school since a few days after her 4th birthday. She received early intervention was in special education Pre-K for two years where she got speech services and one-on-one attention. When she finished kindergarten, I knew first grade was going to be rough. I knew just how hard of a year she was going to have. I fought to make sure her IEP included reading and math help. I made sure she received her Indian Education services, too. With all this additional attention you would assume we would be thrilled. Don’t get me wrong I am very thankful for the services the school does provide. But, when Mustang added Pre-K they got rid of Pre-1st due to lack of funding. A program my daughter would have benefited greatly from.
This past week I sat down with my daughter’s teacher to find out that she just can’t keep up, and moving her on at this time would not be in her best interest. I supported this decision 100%. My issue is now I have had to explain to my seven years old she gets to do first grade again. And, do you know what this sweet, kind, polite child told me? She said, “she was stupid.” This little girl who gives 110% a 100% of the time who truly just doesn’t get it. Things just haven’t clicked yet for her. It isn’t from a lack of effort on her part. She just needs more help.
She is a miraculous child. She was diagnosis-ed at 1 with congenital benign hypotonia. This means her muscles weren’t developed like normal children at birth. She has done Physical Therapy, Occupational Therapy, and Speech Therapy in a private health care setting. She couldn’t run until age four now she plays softball, does gymnastics, and played basketball this year. My point in telling you this is she is a fighter. She has fought to walk, talk, run and be accepted by her peers. Now, she is going to be faced with the opportunity for children to bully her. Because you can’t figure out how to balance a budget: a program that would have changed my child’s life and shaped her bright future wasn’t available.
I understand that we used this year as a transitional first, but we shouldn’t have had to create our program. I shouldn’t have to fight for services my child needs in IEP meetings. I shouldn’t have my precious little girl tell me that she is “stupid” because the system failed her.
You failed her.
She deserved better.
She deserves more.
She gives everything 110% why couldn’t you do the same for her. Your continuation of cutting taxes and offering tax breaks to businesses and oil companies needs to stop it is jeopardizing our children’s future. When will you give all our kids 110% and put them first?