3 months again...how does that happen? LOL
What does that mean--starting a new stage of my life, you may wonder... Well, after more than 10 years of adult education and advocacy in special education, and 3 years teaching high school history, this year I am switching things up again! Last Monday, I began the "middle school" phase of my life again! And, it is at the same middle school I attended as a teen and the same middle school where I did my student teaching all those years ago....well, sort of--the same school but in a newer building at a new site all the way across town!
SO, what is this new middle school phase? After all those years in advocating for the rights of children with disabilities, I am now a full-time ESE (Exceptional Student Education) teacher for 7th and 8th grade here in LaBelle. That means that I am the "special ed" teacher for all of our LaBelle Middle School students who have a 504 or IEP (Individualized Education Plan)--whether in an ESE class or not. I am the one who helps keep up with/monitor their IEPs. I am the resource room teacher and the one who does the consults on the kiddos who don't spend any time in an ESE classroom, but have special needs. We had our first round of IEP meetings this week and everything went great! The Staffing Specialist for our side of the county (the ESE person from the Board of Education) is an old friend and teacher of mine. She was a science teacher when I was in Middle School. She was a CHADD member when I founded the first CHADD Chapter of my CHADD career (anybody remember the "duck tape" story?), and she's a great friend and parent of 2 pretty ADHD kiddos...well, young adults! We've worked together over the last 3 years while I was the "regular education" teacher for lots of children with special needs at the high school. Now, we'll be working together a bit more and with a new focus--for me at least!