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Special ed kids used as janitors

3888 Views 12 Replies 10 Participants Last post by  dolphinkisser

School officials said many special education students will do janitorial work after high school, so they believe the tasks are appropriate. The Evergreen School District's Work Experience Program is aimed at teaching special education students work skills that would help them get jobs and live independently after school.

I can't believe this...these parents must be can they even defend this??
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They really have the nerve to call this work experience? Sounds more like a form of twisted slave labor to me.
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to use these children as free labor.

They have enough self-esteem issues being in Special Education without being humiliated in front of their peers.
The only thing I see wrong with this is that the parents were not told, which leads me to believe they were not on the up and up.

If it is true that they lacked outside work experience sites, then I think learning the trade of janitor is a suitable replacement.

Are we saying that janitors are somehow less than admirable? I doubt a janitor would think so.
I also see the big issue as being the lack of information for parents. And the teasing. That would be a huge issue. I don't think that I would go as far as to call it slave labor. If these kids were filing in the office, would that be slave labor? How about the positions they were assigning working at retail stores?
I worked in cleaning for several years before I had DS, and trained housekeepers and janitors can make upwards of $20/hr in the public sector. I was making $19/hr with full benefits at a hotel. I find it sad that the people who clean up are so often looked down on by others.
I have to stress again the self esteem issues with regards to peers. Just because they are SpEd students doesn't mean they don't have egos or personal pride or want to be independent or accepted by peers. My six year old is enormously proud that he is mainstreamed for much of the day. And right or wrong, you know teens aren't going to be kind with regards to the "janitor" issue. These kids are being used and unwittingly set up for public ridicule.
No one is looking down on janitors but I feel the school made a huge error of judgement when they had kids work as janitors in the school they were attending.

Also some of the jobs did pay, why didn't the school district pay them??
I was a SpEd teacher and in our school some of the students in the non-academic life skills track also did janitorial stuff with out janitors. I don't see anything wrond with it. Actually, they seemed quite proud of doing real work. I know their parents knew what they were doing.

Some kids are below the IQ level that is necessary for academic success. They do life skills, math, reading, etc. in a special program. They conducted bake sales, learn cooking/kitchen skills, got experience doing things like making change, etc.

It only helps a child who does not have the skills to excel academically to excel at something else. When some of these kids came into my classroom etc., they weren't ashamed at all. They talked to their friends waved at people they knew, etc.

I think it's easy to make assumptions about how they would feel without actually knowing the group of kids doing the work. I thelpd them to get oriented to the kinds of routines and rules that will be expected of them in the workforce.

Before I did this work I would have been aghast too, but coming from a different perspective, I now know why it works.

Not telling the parents is absolutely wrong.
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If these kids were filing in the office, would that be slave labor? How about the positions they were assigning working at retail stores?
No, but I would never allow my kid to work at any job, even as part of a school program, without being paid. These kinds of school/work experiences are not required, nor does one need them to be "ready for the work force." If my child wanted to do a job like this and it was unpaid, I think the right thing to do would be to pay her myself.

One thing about being in the work force is that you GET PAID!!
My brother falls into the special Ed catagory. I wish he would of been taught other skills. It is a respectable job.
He might of be a usful part of society now, with self esteam!
Forced work programs don't do much for self-esteem. If they want to work, why not let them choose the job? Special ed people can do more than just be janitors.
I am a high school life skills teacher and my students are involved in a porter/maintenace program and they get evaluated on their work skills and work ethics. They clean tables at the cafeteria and they bus tables, the vacuum and clean the tables in the conference room after a conference. They go into the principals office and clean her room and organize her desk. We are in charge of the whole school recycling program. They wash the windows in the hallways.
They go into the art room and pt room and clean it upon request. They feel that they are doing something.Most of the staff are very grateful for their contributions. They don't get money for this but neither do others when they go to nursing school or teacher's college nor do we get money when we are getting trained in any job skills.
The kids always beg to go out and do the work program and the parents are on top of everything. I have only heard compliments about my programs and every CSE the parents of the students keep asking that their child remain in my program.
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