Upon receiving information with regard to grade 7-12 students are not to go to school due to high numbers of Covid and Variants. Then I received an email from my daughters teacher stating classes remain in the school building for Specialized Programs (Alternative Learning Program (ALP), in other words children with disabilities. The letter attached from the Principal wrote that this is an offer. Please clarify if ALP students are to go to school in person and if this is a choice decision by the parent.
Last March the first time there was a lock-down my daughter had online-schooling. The second time there was a lock-down my daughter was going to have on-line school but last minute her school decided it was to be in-person. I made the health choice in keeping my daughter at home for the duration. Each day I would receive a phone call from the Calgary Board of Education (CBE) saying my daughter was absent. Then I had received an email from her teacher requesting a meeting with regard to too many absences. This meeting did not happen but I felt I was made to feel inadequate as a parent and irresponsible as a parent for not ensuring my child attend school. This situation has been humiliating.
Although the parents are advised that attending school they are provided a “safe environment” I am finding a discrepancy. When my daughter comes home and she will tell me they had dodgeball, volleyball or tag in gym. I ask if there are requirements to sanitize their hands before and after she said “no”. She also complained one day her foot hurt because a student stepped on it. If the was a social distance rule the student would not be able to reach her foot. I thought there were to be no contact sports. I am also advised that one of the classmates keeps touching her or coming too close and the teacher does not do anything about it. In addition, my daughter is in the same class of 21 students (21 cohorts) I believe this is a concern.
My daughter missed school during Covid restrictions and Bussing decisions. It is no fault of mine that there are issues in this regard. Since last August I was told my daughter had to transfer School location because bussing would no longer bus her from our address due to budget cuts. Then I was told there would be no door-to-door pickup and drop off. This situation created a list of impossibilities to consistently get my daughter to school as I have proficiently in the past. I contacted Head of Transportation and sent a multitude of emails and phone calls to more than five CBE employees. I contacted Southland Transportation as well. Not one person was concerned with my situation.
I am forced to take time off work in the morning and afternoon to drive my daughter to school as I may get another email from her teacher requesting a meeting. I expressed so many times that I was in danger of losing my job for so much lost time at work.
The bus pickup and drop off is less than 80 seconds away (by car) from my home (three blocks) but would be a dangerous walk for my daughter (as per attached).
As such, I feel that I am bullied or manipulated into possibly making a wrong health decision because CBE will not provide some kind of virtual information sessions for ALP? If students without disabilities are given the opportunity to have on-line schooling why isn’t this also given to students with disabilities? Why are the students of ALP put at a greater risk?
Lastly, I have raised four children who have successfully made it to grade 12 and some with further education. I have never had an issue with CBE during these years. I have paid taxes for 44 years in part to support CBE yet I feel this has been overlooked in a disrespectful way by the Government and CBE.
I can be reached at 403-999-5835 and will look forward to hearing from you on how this situation can be resolved.