Dear school board,
Teach our children courage by fixing your mistakes. We know you are busy and cannot research every issue extensively, but when you make a decision and then discover that it is not in the best interests of students and their families, please put it back on your agenda and correct it.
Leave our special needs students at Grant Elementary. Our children need the lessons in tolerance and compassion gained by having special needs students in the classroom with them. I have seen wonderful things as our “regular” students reach out and help these children. The “regulars” need to experience the positive feelings that come from helping. Many of them need the acceptance and affection these students so unhesitatingly give.
Special need students are part of our learning community at Grant, and we all need the lessons they are teaching. Our excellent teacher’s assistants very capably handle their needs, help them integrate into our classes, and help other students learn how to interact with them. These are lessons we cannot afford to miss.
We pay a lot in taxes. Why waste those dollars remodeling classrooms at Grant and at Madison when we have the facilities right now to accommodate both special needs and early childhood if they stay where they are? Madison is already in close proximity to the Tiny Tiger Intergenerational Center and Marshfield High School, where students take classes in early childhood education. It just does not make sense to switch things around.
Please do the right thing, put this item back on your agenda, and correct this error immediately. Let us be high performing in compassion and common sense as well as in academics.
Lisa Lonsdale (and many others who “can’t say anything” because they work for the district and fear repercussions — another problem I would love you to fix)