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We Didn't Know Why He Was Failing His Classes

Updated on April 9, 2019

We Couldn't Figure Out What Was Wrong

My son liked school, I thought, but around the eighth grade he started getting bad grades. He also started noticing girls, and I thought this was probably part of the problem.

By the second semester I got a call from the school, and I went for a parent teacher meeting. It seemed he got A's in band, and physical Education, and straight F's in all of his other classes. Even though he was going to school, there were classes he was not showing up for, and it was getting worse.

The school wanted me to have his vision tested, and they were going to test him for some other possible disabilities, for even when he did turn in work it was all wrong answers. Now I knew that from previous years he knew how to read, and he comprehended what he read. He understood basic math, so I just didn't quite understand what the problem was.

Another thing I noticed, was that even though he was in eighth grade, he still printed and refused to write in cursive. His printing made him appear to be in about the fourth grade.

The school decided that he just wasn't interested in his classes, or in school, and labeled him lazy. They said that he just wouldn't apply himself, and that there wasn't anything else they could do. The school ended up expelling him for lack of attendance, homework, and flunking on every test. By this time he was also getting quite an attitude, and a mouth that was getting worse and worst so far as respecting the teachers and staff.

I had to put him in a special school for troubled kids, that was a combo of home study and detention. He went to school one day a week, and all other work was done at home.

I Was Confused

The homeschooling went rather well, for he would do all of his assigned work in about two days. It would be correct, neat, and he seemed to be a much happier person. I felt as if he was missing out on some rather important things so far as socializing with kids his own age, and other things, but he was getting good grades.

The next year I was again concerned. The school made him redo the same remedial math that he had the year before, but the teacher said that he just didn't think that my son would be able to do any kind of higher math, that he was barely understanding this math. He was still printing like a third grader, and we were just barely scraping through.

Would I ever figure out what the problem was? I would, but not right away.

He graduated high school, and we talked about him attending a jr. college. He seemed enthusiastic, so we made an appointment for him to sign up. The day of the appointment he went on his own, and when he returned home he showed me the classes he signed up for.

The first one was Calculus. I almost couldn't believe my eyes. I said to him that I thought he should start out with an easier math, for he had not even taken algebra.

He came back with - "They gave me an equivalency test and said it was fine."

Now I was really concerned. But, I didn't say one more word about it and decided to just wait and see. At the semesters end, he had an A in the Calculus class.

In Hindsight it is Always 20/20

The next few semesters went like a fine tuned piano. He took one math class after the next and got straight A's. Trig, Statistics, the works, and not one problem. He went through all of his prerequisite classes, and in the next three years went ahead and earned two BA degrees, one in electronics, and the other in Tech. Communications.

He now works for the government making his own designs for wireless gadgets, and runs his own department.

He wasn't slow at all, it was so simple we just couldn't see it.. He was bored, he wasn't slow. He was gifted, but we just didn't know it. The reason he wasn't getting good grades in public school, was because he was so bored.

The last thing that hadn't been answered yet was why, and he still did it, was he writing like a third grader. He never did learn to hand write, and still printed. When I asked him he stated very simply, I already knew how to write, and why should I waste my time learning to write all ovr again, you can read this can't you?

Very practical thinking, I guess. His IQ tested out to be in the high 160's. I thought he was slow, and he was a near genius. Boy, did I feel dumb......


Submit a Comment
  • ddsurfsca profile imageAUTHOR

    deb douglas 

    3 years ago from Oxnard

    It turned out well for him, but this isn't always the case depending on the situation. Many times schools fail our kids, not reading the right results in the testing, or just not taking the time because they have too many students to do a good job.

  • GarnetBird profile image

    Gloria Siess 

    9 years ago from Wrightwood, California

    This article was heartbreaking; check out my hub on "Does Your Child Have a Learning Disability?" So often school districts practice inappropriate placements. Too often gifted students are treated this way.

  • mikicagle profile image


    9 years ago from Oklahoma

    I am glad things worked out for him the way they did. I can't believe that the professionals in the schools didn't even consider him being gifted-unfortunately someone at the school didn't want to do their job.


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