That was one hell of a long day!
I didn't realize it had been FOUR WEEKS since I teased y'all with the "I'll wrap this series up tomorrow with an update of where we are - what steps I'm taking - where I hope this story goes" line of my last post.
I did retain an attorney with the financial help of Andy's parents. I didn't go bottom of the barrel, but rather decided it was best to use a firm with proven results in educational law.
Funny story ...
When Mike and I went in for the consultation with the attorney, and it came time to talk about payment, I said, "I have kind of an odd situation with payments ..." After the attorney cut me off with, "We don't accept payments. You have to pay us a retainer," and I assured him I was aware of that - that I had just used the wrong words, I explained the financial support of Andy's parents.
"Do you mind if I call them now?" as he was already grabbing the phone to make the call.
I don't think he believed me. I don't blame him, at that point I was having a hard time believing it was true.
When Andy's dad answered the call, and explained what they were doing for Cam, and why they were doing it, the attorney said, "I'm at a loss for words, and attorneys are never at a loss for words."
Five days later, Mike dropped off the check for the retainer and copies of 11 years of documentation relating to Cam's diagnosis and school experience (three binders full), along with a request to allow me to participate in the process as much as possible to minimize costs. I feel a duty to be as fiscally responsible for Andy's parents money as possible.
Cam will be undergoing another full-scale neuro-psych evaluation Tuesday and Wednesday of next week. This time from a consulting group the attorney recommended.
We (the attorney and I) will be meeting with the school district and a mediator on Wednesday, March 20th. The hope is that this will be resolved without going to Due Process.
Cam has not had a single referral to the Dean's office since December, and was even selected to participate in a video the school is putting together that addresses cyber bullying ... and he is not playing the big, black, scary student in the video.
The SRO that has been such an ass, has been suspended from his position (possibly fired, I can't seem to find out what, exactly, his status is). Oddly, not because of his inappropriate words with Andy and his parents, but because he and the electrical theory teacher decided it would be a good idea to offer students 5 extra credit points if they would allow the SRO to tase them.
Apparently, someone in the class recorded a video of this extra credit assignment, posting it to YouTube, and some of the parents of the kids who were under 18 weren't very happy with the SRO and teacher's conduct without parental consent.
I think this all bodes well for the result we want - Cam to continue attending his home high school.
I also think the school, and the district, may have had a bit of a wake-up call.