California Dreaming

| Learning | September 8, 2013

(I’m in second grade, and have to go across town to the only school in the district with a special education classroom. Previously I wasn’t being challenged enough, and I wasn’t allowed to get books from the 4th and 5th grade classroom. This has also led to me misbehaving. On this day my mom, after lots of trouble with the district, gets to stay in the classroom and see how the day normally goes. The teacher is teaching us the state capitals. I’m fairly good, but not perfect.)

Teacher: “Does anyone have a guess as to what the capital of California is?”

(I raise my hand.)

Teacher: “Yes, [my name]?”

Me: “Uh, I think it’s… it starts with a S, A—”

Teacher: “Incorrect. The capital of California is Los Angeles.”

Me: “No it’s not!”

Teacher: “[My name], you didn’t raise your hand.”

Me: “Sorry. But it’s not Los Angeles.”

Teacher: “I’m the teacher; I know these things.”

(My mom steps forward.)

Mom: “Actually, she’s right. It’s not Los Angeles; it’s Sacramento.”

Teacher: “Sacramento? That’s not even a real city. Of course it’s Los Angeles! I’m from California; I know these things. And you’re supposed to be silently watching, not interrupting and telling the class incorrect answers.”

(A week later, combined with other factors, my mom pulls me out of school for homeschooling. I have a reading score on the latest test higher than half the fifth-graders. We’ve since taught the school district how to handle special education properly.)

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