Wednesday, January 25, 2012

The Spivack Story

I have grave concerns over this truancy law, as well as many other issues we are having in our legislature these days. My biggest concern over this particular law is that parents, the guardians, protectors, and advocates of our children, are being scrutinized and punished.

If my children are in the "HAL" program, they have good grades and are able to pass into the next grade with flying colors, but have more than 20 absences, what exactly is the problem?

My elementary children are ADHD and have a very difficult time falling asleep even with medicinal help. Their doctor and I have been working diligently for 3 years for a solution to this problem. However, the fact remains that if they have difficulty falling asleep, they have a bigger problem trying to get up in the morning.

That being the case, with the new 15 minute earlier start time, makes it nearly impossible for my children to make it to school on time. Guess what, every time they are late, that time gets tacked onto the 20 days for absenteeism, in smaller increments. If this law becomes a problem for me personally, I will have to look at the possibility of home schooling my children!

We are also Jewish and this law is really a burden. We have holidays that my children go to synagogue to worship and pray. They are considered "non-work" days. Therefore, they do not go to school. Before this truancy law, these "holidays" were considered excused absences. However, they now are counted as part of the 20 days that can cause issues for us. There are several days in the fall and 2-3 in the spring. It is unfortunate that our "church and state" are separate in every way except in our schools at this time. If my children were to get extremely sick, these "holidays" can affect our family's core values and cost us much more.

I am of the opinion that EVERY government official works for me, not against me. That is, For the people, By the people...I pay your salary, I voted to put you into office. I can vote you out and I will. For those of us who care about our children in every aspect of their lives, medical, emotional, and educational, this law stinks! It needs to either be repealed or at the very least reworked!

Marcie Spivack
Millard Public Schools

Omaha, NE

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