What would you do?

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Regular Member

Date Joined Jul 2007
Total Posts : 188
   Posted 11/2/2008 1:11 PM (GMT -7)   
I had a meeting with my principal where I teach.  I asked if I could teach a second grade class.  Currently, I a mteaching in a special ed. classroom that requires me to have a PARAProfessional.  I am getting to where AI think I may not be able to do this job due to reason like lifting students, etc.  I do need this job due my insurance, etc.  I asked about switching over to a second grade classroom next school year.  However, my principal brought upo the fact thaty I would not ahave afulltime parapro and would not have the benefit of going to the restroom like I could do now b/c I have a paraprofessional in there with me. I went for a Dr. apt yesterday and explained to my doctor and told me that there was a such thing as Americans with Disabilities Act and if I would have to be accomodated.  jWould you all continue the job I'm currently doing or push to do what you wanted to do (the 2nd grade class)

Regular Member

Date Joined Jan 2006
Total Posts : 355
   Posted 11/2/2008 1:17 PM (GMT -7)   
I would push to do what I really wanted to do.  If you are where you really want to be in your career, you will be happier.  If you do switch to second grade, you can always call the principal or vice principal  to your classroom to relieve you for a bathroom break if needed.   

Veteran Member

Date Joined May 2005
Total Posts : 4219
   Posted 11/2/2008 3:16 PM (GMT -7)   
I would ask the principal to help you make reasonable accomodations (as provided under the ADA). That may not include having someone in your classroom full time. That might not be seen as reasonable to pay someone a salary just so you can do your job. But reasonable may include you going to the bathroom whenever you want and keeping the door open between the classrooms. Reasonable may mean having parent volunteers in your class to help students but also giving you the ability to go. Reasonable may mean calling someone from the office to come give you breaks. Can you wait that long? Will you be comfortable going as often as you want if someone has to cover you?

In order to be covered by the ADA you have to be able to do the minimum job requirements with or without reasonable accomodation. So lifting students may be a required part of SPED. Is there a reasonable accomodation you can think of to help with the lifting?

This is a tough decision you have to make ---which do you feel more comfortable having accomodated? How often do you get breaks as it is? How often do you think you would have to have your classroom covered?
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Veteran Member

Date Joined Sep 2006
Total Posts : 845
   Posted 11/3/2008 1:07 AM (GMT -7)   
Obviously, you want to always have your boss in your corner, but this may be the exception because it is dealing with your future. Aren't your a member of the teachers union? It may be in your best interest to get your union rep involved to do the fighting for you. I am sure that you signed a contract to teach and it is the schools' obligation to honor the contract and the American with Disabilities Act. If the lifting is causing you distress, then ask the principal to come and do the lifting for you or provide an assistant to do the lifting. If the principal does not think that hiring an assistant or his helping with the lifting is ok, then remind him of your request to switch over to be a 2nd grade teacher. Most younger grades have home room mothers that volunteer, thus providing you assistance if you need to leave the classroom to use the restroom. Again, if all else fails, contact your teachers union and let them help you.
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