Boy, we’ve been busy! I've been in education for a very long time and I have never met a parent who didn’t want the best education for their child. So, why is it so difficult to get what our kids need to succeed? There’s no one true answer. But a common obstacle is not knowing where to go for help from trustworthy sources.
From emails to text messages to social media notifications, we’re inundated with information. There are tons of blogs, social media groups, and newsletters that give great advice and offer support. However, the flood of information can be overwhelming and intimidating. The question is how do we use it all? How do we sift through the massive amounts of details to find what our kids need to succeed? How do we get schools to consider and apply our suggestions as parents? Well, that's when you seek a professional education advocate. They do the heavy lifting in getting answers and results.
Medical professionals often steer patients away from the internet and social media because there are many individual variables that may contribute to one's health. The same goes for concerns with our kids’ education. No internet site or social media outlet will give you the individualized support and service needed to transform your child's potential into achievement. There are too many individual variables that influence your child's performance. That's why I always recommend professional resources as a starting point. My favorite right now is the Council for Parent Advocates and Attorneys (COPAA).
COPAA provides a great deal of reputable information on identifying and working with a professional education advocate. Review Guidelines for Choosing an Advocate for more information on what to look for in a strong advocate. So, take the first step in addressing your concerns about your kids’ education by finding a professional advocate. Start with COPAA's Directory of Advocates and Attorneys.
Ever wanted to give up?!? The journey has been long. The challenges have worn you out. Time, money, energy is waning. Moments of victory are fleeting and it’s just been so dang hard. Nevertheless, you press on. Why, you may ask?
Because who else will? We can relate. We stand with families and their students side by side through an educational process that too often is as rough as sandpaper. We shoulder some of the burden of going to school meetings, expressing concerns, requesting for compassion and understanding. We’re with parents seeking to find comfort in a system that has left them and their children with broken dreams. We’re with administrators and educators who are bullied by bureaucracy because they have the heart and willingness to find a common ground on behalf of the student. We stand with you sharing the scars from the challenges faced to support children with exceptional abilities. As we persevere, is worth knowing we are being polished by the very thing that is trying to extinguish our dreams.
It’s never an easy journey but one that’s worth the mountain of hardships. It’s our children, our cousins, our grandchildren—our dreams. So, we don’t give up! We keep pressing onward. Working, planning, thinking...just not giving up until we see the dream come to fruition. We are trailblazers whose dreams do come true simply because we did not give up.
Dr. Owens is an educator, expert, and advocate for children with exceptional abilities. A Florida native, she enjoys learning about different cultures, traditions, and languages. Dr. Owens resides in Charleston, South Carolina with her young family.