Well, I shouldn't be surprised at what I just witnessed on the news, though I am because it's absolutely disgusting.
In what was reported as "new revelations" by Channel 10 news, I am now being falsely accused of attacking "special ed students."
At the school board meeting, the superintendent stated that I have made it "impossible" for me to teach in this district, and added that the pain and confusion I've caused by my words is the problem. He cited how this was done, "when she blogged, 'I don't care if you lick windows, take the special bus, or occasionally pee on yourself...you hang in there Sunshine, you're friggin' special.'"
Then the news, in an effort to really drive home the effect that this was somehow part of the comments I was standing by, showed a clip of me saying that I stand by my statements because they are the truth.
Let me set the record straight right now:
I have NEVER made any anti-special needs comments. The item to which the superintendent was referring was a stock image graphic from online that accompanied my "cooperative in class" blog post that's been the talk of nation for the past 2 weeks.
First, those were NOT my words. They were on the image as it came, and that image can be found easily online.
Second, I didn't select the image as ANY sort of slight or commentary on special needs individuals. I thought it was apropos to the post topic because it reflected the sentiment that I was trying to express within the blog post, which was that no matter what, the comments on the report cards always end up mostly positive.
In no way and in no form did I even read the graphic in a way that was derogatory to people with special needs. I read it in a way that was patting all people on the back regardless of their actions.
From the time I was 3, my grandfather was unable to walk or talk, having suffered a debilitating stroke. And from elementary school onward, my own father has struggled with multiple sclerosis and is now bound to a wheelchair. For my entire life, I've witnessed and experienced the struggles of individuals with special needs and I would NEVER callously make light of them as it has just been suggested that I have done.
It should come as no surprise that the district would endeavor to cast the innocuously selected cartoon in this light to further vilify me, and that the media would latch onto it in an effort to cause further controversy with this ongoing issue.
As I've noted, lack of support from school administration is one of the primary problems in education today, and it seems they will do anything and everything to keep the spotlight off of themselves. Apparently this is the way they play politics, but I'm not a politician; truth and facts will strengthen my cause whereas misinformation will strengthen theirs.
And despite any misinformation that may be presented by others, I will continue to discuss the problematic matters that exist in education today.