If you’re just joining us, please read yesterday’s post HERE. After that first email I sent to SpedHead on Tuesday, February 21, I received an unusually speedy response that afternoon from her that she would be looking into the matter and that all emails would indeed be entered into RM’s school file.
Up to this point, I had been prepared for a few snags in getting this new transportation scenario straightened out but I hadn’t worried for RM’s safety – yet. The next morning, the same van arrived to take RM to AWESOME AUTISM SCHOOL as I expected. But what blew my mind was what I found when I opened the side door to put RM in her seat.
Good morning, SpedHead
I am beyond words.
RM’s van arrived this morning with the same Nameless Driver and Nameless Monitor. But instead of the driver’s granddaughter, now there was a boy between 10- and 12-years-old in pajamas holding a full breakfast in his hands sitting in an open seat where yesterday held Boyfriend’s car seat. As I placed RM into what I thought was the same car seat she rode in yesterday (that I struggled to readjust for her yesterday), I found that the seat had been readjusted once more and no longer fit her properly – again. As Nameless Preteen Boy moved to the back, Nameless Monitor pulled Boyfriend’s car seat out of the back row to make room for Nameless Preteen Boy and placed the car seat where Boyfriend sat yesterday. But the seat looked more like it was set to fit RM. As I was attempting to strap RM in and fix the seat height on the other side, I looked down to see half-eaten food on the van floor – to include the bony remains of a chicken wing.
[I pause here mid-email to say to my readers – WTF? CHICKEN. BONES.]
There was a ton of trash around the floor and a receipt of some kind tucked into the side of RM’s car seat cushion. RM still mouths things and is still very much at risk for choking. Not only am I disgusted by the condition of the van but I am reeling from the lack of safety regarding properly maintaining RM’s car seat and leaving chokables within easy reach of her.
I will be picking RM up from AWESOME AUTISM SCHOOL this afternoon, but I expect these issues resolved. Please notify me when there has been an appropriate transportation plan put into place for RM.
Once again, SGM and I request that this email become a permanent part of RM’s school file.
Thank you, SpedHead –
I will now refer to Nameless Driver as ‘Chicken Lady’. Mkay?
Here’s the next volley by the BOE:
Good afternoon Mrs. Kenyon,
I am writing in response to your request for a meeting this coming Friday in regards to concerns with RM’s transportation.
After reviewing the emails the transportation concerns are:
- staff changes
- vehicle changes
- car seats
- bus route
Please let me know if there are any other transportation related issues you wish to discuss.
Thank you in advance,
By now, I am just annoyed.
Hi, Assistant SpedHead,
Thanks for getting back to us.
You have included all of our concerns regarding transportation. We’d like to note in advance that should Crappy Transportation Company choose to reinstate the same monitor, Miss Wonderful, that would be a step in the right direction. Not only would it give RM and Boyfriend some stability in the process, but she is a phenomenal young woman who has taken a lot of initiative in understanding what works for the kids. Outside of that, her presence on the route provides a measure of relief in the area of liability for both that of the district and Crappy Transportation Company. We trust her. She is knowledgeable and on top of things like proper seating, safety and van behavior.
Here’s the district’s attempt to squirm out of a face-to-face meeting with us and Boyfriend’s parents.
Good Morning SGM and Mrs. Kenyon,
In regards to transportation related concerns which arose this past week, the following updated information is being provided:
1. Staff changes- As of Monday February 27th, the driver assigned to the route will be Another Stranger. The monitor, Miss Wonderful, will be back on this route as previously assigned.
2. Vehicle changes- The yellow van that was typically used for this route was in for scheduled maintenance, necessitating a change in the vehicle. The original bus is scheduled to be back in service on Monday February 27th.
3. Car seats- The car seats (APEX 6500) that have been being used will be back in the vehicle for Monday February 27th.
4. Bus route- The bus route is determined by the location of the student’s home to provide for efficiency.
Please feel free to contact me with any questions and/or concerns.
No. You’re not getting out of this meeting, Lady. (I should note that Assistant SpedHead was RM’s in-district Speech Pathologist for nearly two years, who also fought us for 14 months that RM even had ‘autism’.)
Hi, Assistant SpedHead,
This is a good starting point for the discussion on Monday at 2pm.
Please advise Crappy Transportation Company that we will not be putting RM on the van on Monday the 27th pending working out the remaining details of the plan to move forward.
It is a great step in the right direction by reinstating Miss Wonderful as the monitor for our route. However, if the proposed driver is Chicken Lady that drove RM at the beginning of this week, then that is not an option. SGM would be happy to describe in more detail at the meeting what he witnessed while following the vehicle with RM on board. It goes well beyond the cleanliness of the vehicle.
We look forward to meeting with everyone on Monday.
Enjoy your weekend, Assistant SpedHead.
TUNE IN TOMORROW TO HEAR WHAT SGM WITNESSED CHICKEN LADY DOING AS HE FOLLOWED THE VAN… AND READ THE EXCITING CONCLUSION TO THE ‘CRAPPY TRANSPORTATION COMPANY’ SAGA.