Mon 31 Aug 2009
What can you do if your school does not consult you in placing your twins, triplets or higher order multiples?
Many schools are now consulting the parents when making decisions about placement of twins, triplets, and higher order multiples. But what should you do if they either do not consult you, or if they make a decision contrary to your request?
Today, in part 5 of our series, “Twins and Multiples in School – Together or Separate?” We’ll take a look at options for what to do when your children are placed differently than you feel would be best.
- Option 1: Accept the decision. Although the placement might not be what you originally desired, take the time to review all the benefits of the placement and re-evaluate your position. Perhaps you will choose to make the best of the placement. Consider any other circumstances that you might have previously overlooked or which might be newly introduced. For example, maybe you feel that pressing your position might damage your relationship with the school or educators. Some of the previous articles in this series may be helpful in your evaluation.
- Option 2: Submit a formal request. If you did not previously submit a written request for placement together or separately, you might wish to do that now. If you didn’t let them know your preference, it is unfortunate if they did not consult you — but perhaps they would honor your request if they knew of your preference.
- Option 3: Further press your position. If you previously submitted a request, but they chose to place your multiples differently than you requested, you might choose to further press your position, or at least request an explanation.
Steps to consider if you choose to further pursue an alternative placement for your twins or multiples in the classroom.
- Ask to see the written policy. Does an official policy exist? Or is the school more flexible? Many schools have a common, or even a strictly enforced practice — but no official policy one way or the other. Be aware that policy and/or practice can exist at the school district level, or at the individual school level.
- Investigate if any laws have been passed in your area regarding placement of multiples in the classroom. Many states have passed laws or have pending legislation.
- Research your position. If you have not already done so, conduct your own research to support your case. Our series, “Twins and Multiples in School — Same Classroom or Separate?” can help get you started.
- Provide specific feedback about your twins / multiples and what factors lead you to request one way or the other. Write out a formal request.
- Obtain written professional opinions to submit (pediatrician, psychologist, caregivers, etc.) in support of your position.
- Request a meeting to present your position and to understand their perspective.
Regardless of the final outcome, it is important to remember that a good working relationship with your children’s educators is important to their success in school. Next year will bring a new opportunity to achieve the placement you desire. Do keep in mind that you will need to conduct a new assessment each year, as the factors will no doubt have changed as your multiples grow and mature.
Read the full series:
- Part 1: Twins and Multiples in School — Same Classroom or Separate?
- Part 2: Twins and Multiples in School — 10 Reasons to Place Twins Together
- Part 3: Twins and Multiples in School — 8 Reasons to Separate Twins
- Part 4: Twins and Multiples in School — How to decide between together or separate
- Part 5: Twins and Multiples in School Together or Separate — What to do if you aren’t consulted