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The Mother Of All Answers

, | Learning | April 25, 2013

(I am about 12 years old and in seventh grade. I have some mental illnesses that earned me an IEP, or “independent educational plan” throughout my schooling. There is a specific teacher who deals with IEPs and is called into class if we “act out.”)

PE Teacher: “Why aren’t you wearing your PE shoes? I know you have issues changing out, but you NEED your shoes!”

Me: “We just got back from winter break and I grew. My PE shoes are too small.”

PE Teacher: “You need to put on your PE shoes.”

Me: “I can’t. They’re too small and hurt my feet.”


Me: “Why can’t I just wear the shoes I have now? They’re also sneakers. Besides, you let [non-IEP student] wear her sneakers.”

PE Teacher: “She’s different than you! You need to put on your PE shoes RIGHT NOW or I’m calling [IEP Teacher]!”

(I do as she asks, begrudgingly. As expected, the shoes are too small and my feet begin to ache horribly. The above back and forth goes on for a while, until the PE Teacher decides to call my IEP teacher, insisting I’m just being difficult.)

IEP Teacher: “Why won’t you put on your PE shoes?”

Me: “They’re too small. We just got back from winter break, and I grew. They hurt my feet. Why can’t I just wear my other sneakers?”

IEP Teacher: “You need to wear your PE shoes.”

Me: “No. I won’t!”

IEP Teacher: “Fine. Come with me.”

(We leave class, but I’m only a little relieved; this IEP teacher is new and I don’t like her.)

IEP Teacher: “So, why wouldn’t you put on your PE shoes?”

Me: “They’re. TOO. SMALL. Please — I’ve been saying this for the last 45 minutes. The shoes I’m wearing are fine and if [non-IEP student] is allowed to wear her regular sneakers, why can’t I until I get new PE shoes?”

IEP Teacher: “No, you’re just being difficult.”

Me: *speechless*

IEP Teacher: “I’m going to call your mom, and she can come pick you up and take you to a shoe store to get you new PE shoes. Then you can come back here and finish the class.”

Me: “Let me get this straight… you’re going to call my mom while she’s at work, pull me out of school during class, and take me to get new shoes, and then COME BACK to FINISH the class? All in 20 minutes?”

IEP Teacher: “Yes, exactly!”

Me: “That’s f****** bull****.”

(I head back to PE class and, to my surprise, am not punished for my language. I later learn the following occurred seconds after I left when the IEP teacher still called my mom.)

IEP Teacher: “Your child cursed at me! She said an order I gave her was [curse].”

My Mom: “That’s odd. She wouldn’t curse like that unless she was given a reason. What did you tell her?”

(The IEP Teacher repeats her shoe shopping idea to my mom.)

My Mom: “Wait… so you want me to take time off work in the middle of the day, pick up my kid, take her to a shoe store so she can get some new PE shoes, and then somehow bring her back to school and sign her in in time to finish the class that, at now, only has 15 minutes left?”

IEP Teacher: “Yes, that’s all I asked!”

My Mom: “That’s f****** bull****.” *hangs up*

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