Let Joanna attend East Chester Elementary School

Let Joanna attend East Chester Elementary School

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Anna Ward-Duck started this petition to Chester County School District Melinda Parker and

Hello,
My name is Anna Duck. My husband and I adopted a little girl from China back in 2018 and discovered that she was deaf after getting her home. After discovering this, we looked into all resources for her education and were referred to Tennessee School for the Deaf, particularly the West Tennessee campus, since that is where we live. After about a year there, it was becoming obvious she did not care for it there as she would cry every morning when the public transport vehicle arrived to pick her up and drive her to school as it is a 45-minute drive to the school, and she had to be there by 0730. I had to be home to put our son on the bus. My husband had to be at work by 8 am at the latest, so neither of us could take her. With the pandemic, the school started virtual learning, but it was not a good fit for Joanna as she had trouble focusing on the Ipad, and the teacher seemed to have issues with teaching in that manner, talking off-screen at times. When it became an issue with the school, they suggested returning her to an in-person class, which we declined to Joanna's other health need, her heart condition, and the upcoming surgery. This conversation led to an incident where I had to load Joanna up in the vehicle during class time to pick up the other two children from school and voice lessons, and because Joanna had muted the phone, I could not hear the teacher. They called the Department of Children's Services to report that our daughter had been left unattended in the vehicle while the whole time I was right in front of her. When asked why they did so, the only answer they would give was, "We had to do what we felt was best for the child."
Due to this incident, a gross overstep by the staff and faculty for West Tennessee School for the Deaf, we removed her from the school and started home school. Since her heart surgery, she can move more freely amongst people as long as she wears a mask, so we enrolled her in our local public school where our son goes. Joanna has loved going there, looks forward to school, and is excited to go every day. Though, the county school system has ruled during her recent IEP meeting to insist that she return to the Deaf School, much at the suggestion of staff from the Deaf School. Is it not discrimination and segregation to force a child into a deaf school? Please help us tell Chester County this is not right, and Joanna should not be segregated.

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