This blog was inspired by 31 for 21 & is about my wonderful family.

"As a mother, my job is to take care of what is possible & trust God with the impossible." ~Ruth Bell Graham

"Never look down on someone, unless you're helping them up!"

Tuesday, February 15, 2011


As you may know, a teacher/coach (& a member of our church) at Chancey's school has called a few of his students the "R" word & "special" two weeks in a row.  I have called him out on this & today, in lieu of having enough guts to actually call me & speak to me, he emails me.  This is what the email said:

Mrs. Forrester,

I apologize if I have offended Chancey and you and rest assured that I will do my best not to use either of those words any more in my classroom.  I have several extended family members who are special needs and do not use either of those words as disrespect.  While teaching Health we talk about some pretty intense yet interesting topics and sometimes students will respond in inappropriate ways to get attention.  It is during these moments where I have probably used one of these words trying to deflect the comment and quickly move on while staying on the task at hand.  I will try to find other ways to do this and once again I meant no disrespect to you or any member of your family.  On another note I would like for you to talk with Chancey about his recent disruptive behavior.  He has started talking a lot at inappropriate times even to the point where I have had to call him out several times during class.  I'm sure you expect better of him and so do I.  Thank you for your help in this matter and for emailing me with your concern.  Thanks.

Really?  At the end of the email he bashes my son for being disruptive?!  Then he has the gall to ask me to talk with Chancey?  He has the guts to ask me to help him after that sorry excuse of an apology?  How can HE complain when he's in the wrong here, just 'deflect'ing, I suppose.  I find the entire email absurd & just a useless waste of time.  Nothing was accomplished, period.  ~However, I will speak with Chancey about his behavior in class.  It's my job as a mother to make sure that my son is taught correctly.  And I must go on the record here in saying how proud I am that Chancey tells me that this is going on.  It shows great character for him to be such an advocate for people with special needs.
I know that no matter how much you explain to some people that they really don't understand why these offensive words are wrong to say.  But, he is a public school teacher & he has civic duties here.  His job is to teach our kids, not demoralize them.  If he uses these terms in class, I can only imagine what kind of words come out of his mouth at football practice.  He must not have used these particular words this season or Chancey would have told me about it.  It just makes my blood boil to know that he is allowed to do this.  As a Christian, I can forgive this man for being so rude & callous.
I just really wish that people would see how hurtful these words really are.  I suppose that until you have been in our shoes, you don't really understand.  People with special needs aren't the "R" word, stupid, slow, or dumb.  They don't deserve to be degraded.  They deserve to be viewed just as they are, a person with feelings...along with their parents, siblings, aunts, uncles, grandparents, cousins, friends, & peers.  So the next time you want to call someone "special" make sure you mean the are special to you, not stupid.  And vow to never use the "R" word ever again.  Because you never know, the person next to you, behind you,  or in front of you, may be a person with special needs or their loved ones.

1 comment:

  1. Kelli so sorry you have to deal with such disregard for ones feelings. You are a wonderful mother and a strong woman. My daughter starts school in August and I am so afraid of what she will me be exposed to. We just have to pray that God will watch over them and shield them from all the mean things in this world. Your children are lucky to have such a wonderful & caring mom:-)