Letter: Speaking up for the vulnerable
On Nov. 3, I read the cover story regarding the complaint against the Willmar Schools due to a special education teacher's actions. I've researched this case over the past few months, and I've been amazed by the actions of this teacher. We have m...
On Nov. 3, I read the cover story regarding the complaint against the Willmar Schools due to a special education teacher's actions. I've researched this case over the past few months, and I've been amazed by the actions of this teacher. We have many good, kind special education professionals in Willmar. This situation, however, seems to be a horrible case of ignoring staff feedback about child abuse.
I'd like to thank the paraprofessionals that saw the child abuse and came forward with the information. It couldn't have been easy to voice their concerns, especially in the hierarchical educational system.
I'd like to understand why their concerns weren't taken more seriously. How many children were abused as a result of their being told to "mind their own business"? If anyone sees questionable behavior and reports it, they should know that the situation will be investigated. Who will speak for those who cannot speak for themselves? When confronted with similar situations, I hope that we will all have the courage and confidence to be the voice for the vulnerable, the abused, and the person who does not have any power.
No parent should have to go through what Jackie Nelson has had to go through! Having a child with obstacles takes a lot of time and energy in and of itself. Having to deal with investigations, lawyers, documentation, and trying to uncover the truth regarding your developmentally disabled child's abuse should not be taking up Nelson's time. Thank you for being brave, Jackie! Your actions will cause reactions that make all our local schools safer places for special education students.
God bless you, to all the educators, therapists, and day-care staff who lovingly care for our special education children. We are grateful for your patience, empathy, care, and the kindness you show our children with disabilities. Thank you for all you do and for making learning a good experience.