Do Teachers Know Your Kiddo As Well As You Do? — 5 Minutes for Special Needs

Do Teachers Know Your Kiddo As Well As You Do?

by Gina


They know him almost better that we do….in a way.”

There was a time when C would have never said this.  A time when, should someone utter these words to either of us, the emotions would swell.  Our eyes, my eyes, would betray my immediate offense to the statement – the anger.  How could anyone think they know our son better than we?

We who have raised him, helped fight his demons cried with, held down for medical procedures, given therapy to, laughed with, cried with, marveled over and advocated for!  How could anyone know him better?!?  But on the day of this statement, he is correct…not that “they” know him better, but similarly or as well as we do.  Who?  His educators.

We are blessed with a fairly good team surrounding J at school.  The teacher, phenomenal (of course, she’s a fellow warrior).  His aides are good – growing in the understanding, certainly learning, but good.  

They spend 7 hours a day with J, 5 days (or less) a week with him.  They push his independence, his limits for what he believes is his learning.  They guide, praise, redirect and encourage him that entire time.  They “study” him for triggers and communicate what works best for him.  They eat with, play, work and socialize with him.

They know him.  We rely on their observations, discoveries, behavioral techniques and interventions for us to implement at home.  They have the dedicated time to figure these things out. 

Now, should we talk about a different staff, school or circumstance, this view may be entirely different.  But today, without anger, resentment or generally just having my feelings hurt, I’m willing to concede that….they know him as well as we do.

Email Author    |    Website About Gina

Gina St. Aubin is a mother of 3, one diagnosed with Cerebral Palsy, PDD-NOS, Sensory Processing Disorder, and Landau-Kleffner Syndrome (a rare epileptic disorder causing verbal aphasia) . A former Victim's Advocate turned advocate for those with intellectual and physical challenges, Gina believes being a 'Special Parent' means to discover, embrace, educate, advocate, encourage, treasure and laugh.

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1 KDL March 2, 2012 at 12:18 am

That is great that you have such a good team. I am not sure, sometimes, how well our school team knows our daughter. There are times they seem so insightful, and then others, like yesterday, when I feel like they just don’t get it. It is true they spend a lot of her waking time with her and I don’t…but it’s hard to compete with what Mommy knows – every nuance, preference, history, and memory.

2 Gina March 5, 2012 at 12:30 am

Couldn’t agree more KDL…there is no mommy competition there. While I’m thrilled with the team we have now, there are times I question what they do. Still, I know it could be worse and I dread the day that it may be!

3 Jo March 2, 2012 at 5:31 am

I am glad you have found the right place for your son where the people are willing to help him develop.
We too have found a good school. The teacher is great and after a bit of a bumpy start thanks to professionals who had never assessed or even met him getting involved we are working together.
After the first half year she has seen is progress, has played a big part in that.

4 Gina March 5, 2012 at 12:31 am

Jo, I am SO glad to hear that. Too often in our community, it’s completely the opposite.

5 Jo March 5, 2012 at 7:00 am

I should have clarified Gina. He is in a private school which suits him. I couldn’t have sent him to mainstream-to big, to noisy and not very supportive. I had been down that road with his less affected brother.
It means scarifices though and never was on the agenda. It is working for now.

6 Chaney March 2, 2012 at 4:33 pm

I look forward to the day I can have the same sentiment.

7 Gina March 5, 2012 at 12:31 am

Chaney, I hope that day comes soon!

8 colleen March 2, 2012 at 7:59 pm

My daughter’s head teacher is awesome, and I think she knows my daughter very very well. She has even offered to watch my daughter during the summer if I ever need anyone. I mentioned not wanting to have my daughter move onto middle school, and she even mentioned that we may be able to keep her there longer seeing the middle school would have to hire a nurse for the classroom. My daughter had originally started going to a different elementary school but then they offered to have her switch. I am so glad I went ahead with the switch, it has been the best thing. She has had a rough time since starting there (medically) and her teacher has always been there for her and our family!

9 Gina March 5, 2012 at 12:32 am

Colleen, so glad to hear that. I too dread middle school but am glad to know that someone somewhere has had a good result in the end!

10 Barbara Manatee March 4, 2012 at 11:07 pm

That is great that you feel comfortable and confident in your child’s teacher(s) to be able to say that! I am a special ed teacher and hope and pray that some of my students’ parents feel the same way about me.

11 Gina March 5, 2012 at 12:34 am

Barbara, the fact that you’re cognizant of that means more than you know to the parents you work with.

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