ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

A Terrible School

Updated on June 25, 2013
Fritz 6th grade graduation from transitional school
Fritz 6th grade graduation from transitional school

There are seven of us seated at the conference table. We are in a classroom converted to a conference room in a recycled high school built before the earthquake building code in California in 1968. Masonry schools and schools that are more than one story were outlawed as public schools in California upon enactment of the earthquake code. There are many schools in California built prior to 1968 that have been converted for other uses or have special waivers due to different staff/student ratios or other reasons. Seated at the table in addition to Fritz and me are: our agency social worker, Corinne, the school psychologist, the director of special programs with the County board of education, the administrative assistant to the principal, and the principal who looks more like a banker and appears out of place in this classroom/conference room. Fritz does not want to be at this school and I have promised to do what I can to get him into another school. This is a private school and the school staff is arguing Fritz’ readiness to move on.

As a parent with some understanding of special needs children and the services they are legally entitled to, plus my knowledge acquired as a school board trustee; I know there are other options. I also suspect that this school is costing Fritz’ home district more than $4500 per month for Fritz to attend. I do not know what happened to get Fritz into this school. Foster Parents do not get complete histories of foster children and social workers and other system members frequently only know what has been officially filed. Fritz has told me that students are “restrained” by big men against the wall in a special room and I have learned that his teacher does not have a teaching certificate.

The principal, school psychologist, and the teacher present their arguments in favor of Fritz staying at his current school. Fritz is given an opportunity to speak. He volunteers that he is not learning in this school and that he has never behaved as badly as the other students and he doesn’t think he should be here. He did an excellent job for an eleven year old boy and demonstrates that he is articulate and well mannered. I give him a little “thumbs up.” Then it is my turn to speak. I do not want to discuss Fritz’ behavior before I knew him. I simply say that I am currently Fritz mother and I do not wish him to attend this school, I want him placed in a public school as soon as possible. The director from the County Board of Education says that Fritz will have to “transition” back into a regular classroom, but there is a program suitable for him in a school in my neighborhood. It will take several weeks to arrange a placement and she will start on it right away. The principal says that it appears Fritz will be ready to graduate from this program in the next few weeks. We all agree that Fritz must behave very well in the next few weeks for this to go forward. He smiles and promises to work hard. The principal and Corinne leave and the rest of us remain to finalize the transition process.

A casually dressed man enters the room. “Dad!” Fritz exclaims. He is clearly pleased to see his father. The rest of us at the table know this man is responsible for the broken femur of his other son, Daniel. We are stunned, and I am sure, by look on the faces of the other attendees, we all believed him to be still incarcerated. He introduces himself, shakes my hand, and thanks me profusely for taking care of his sons. Fritz’ father is given time at the table to discuss his desires for his son which happen to be exactly what we are all working on. Fritz is sent back to his class and his father leaves without incident.

We are a bit unnerved by presence of Fritz’ father, but he was gracious, respectful and had a right to be there as a parent. Evidently, Fritz’ mother received notice of this meeting and since the father had been released from jail, she asked him to attend.

At the conclusion of the meeting, the woman from the County Board of Education takes me aside and informs me that I need to get Fritz’ educational rights signed over to me by his mother. This is an unexpected assignment, but I take the document. I get the mothers phone number from Corinne and we agree to meet so I can get her signature. She also thanks me for caring for her sons, and assigns his educational rights to me without question.


    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    • PassinItAlong profile image


      7 years ago

      Interesting story,nice share!

      You've done every good thing you can do.

    • bayoulady profile image


      8 years ago from Northern Louisiana,USA

      Another interesting story of the early days!

    • Anne Pettit profile imageAUTHOR

      Anne Pettit 

      8 years ago from North Carolina

      Fritz and his brother Daniel(not their real names) were removed from their birth home before they became my foster sons. The birth mother had nine children and was not able to care for them while their father was incarcerated. Fritz and Daniel were adopted by me and are now almost almost 19 and 20 years old. Thankyou for reading my hub. Anne

    • Seakay profile image


      8 years ago from Florida

      Interesting. I'm assuming the children will be better off. However, was it financial reasons she gave them up?

    • kaltopsyd profile image


      8 years ago from Trinidad originally, but now in the USA

      Again, thanks for sharing.


    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at:

    Show Details
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the or domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)