We are totally, 100%, not okay with putting our sign dependent, non-verbal, visually impaired, HoH, severely gross and fine motor delayed child with non-functional opposable thumbs who is in an assistant-propelled wheelchair in a classroom with that kind of IEP. Now we know without a doubt that we could go to due process over this thing and win, but then we still have to deal with the school district for the next eighteen years, and since Connor's conditions are so complicated and constantly changing, we know that we'll be dealing with them more than once a year as we'll have to update his IEP pretty often. What it came down to was whether or not we believed that Connor was going to receive an adequate education in this school system without constant vigilance and fighting on our part, and the answer we came up with was no.
So we're moving.
We found an apartment in a little town nearby that bears the tongue-twisting name of Puyallup. That's "pew-WALL-up" for those non-Washingtonians. Puyallup has a stellar reputation for special needs education, and is especially known for its Deaf and HoH program. We're giving up our on-post housing, quick work commute, excellent security, and really really close hospital, but if Connor can be at a school where we have a good relationship with the district and he's getting the help he needs, it will be worth it. It's true that we don't have any guarantees that this school district will be any better, but it's very, very hard to see how it could possibly be any worse. And in the unlikely event that this school district doesn't work out, well, we've moved once, and we can do it again.
We took official possession of our apartment today (that's our new living room in the photo), but we're putting in our thirty-day notice for our house on Monday. That way we have a month to move in. Now that we have an official address in Puyallup, we can also start over in getting Connor registered for school next week. In the meantime, we have to figure out whether or not we're going to file a complaint with the Office of The Superintendent of Public Instruction anyway-- we're pretty mad about the way Connor was treated, and we hate to think they could do this to another family.
So here's to starting over again. On to brighter horizons!