I’m reading commentary on Donald Trump’s budget with a certain amount of dread. It’s exactly what he promised. We shouldn’t be surprised, but still I’m depressed.
Let me just focus for a minute on the funding for special education and services, because it’s very much on my mind today. I put aside the rest of the day to find appropriate programs for Ian for the 2-1/2 months of summer.
Ian’s public school will take care of him for a half day through July, but that’s all I have. Without lots of stimulating activity during the summer, he’ll retreat to his computer and have no socialization. He’ll be mute by the time we get to September. There are no state sponsored activities that are appropriate for him, so it’s going to be lots of out-of-pocket expenses with me not working at all, so I can drive him around.
I’ve been calling the financial aid offices at several colleges if see they’ll take into consideration our special education expenses when putting together a financial aid package for Jonah. They won’t. They also don’t care that we wasted too many years in graduate school and didn’t get started on new careers until our mid-30s.
When things get tighter for the special education community, we go into isolationist mode. We take care of our kids first, and we stop advocating for the greater community. I know very well that as tough as things get for us, it is NOTHING compared to families with less means and with kids with more severe problems. (I have horror stories.) But the responsibility of a parent to care for his/her kid first. I can’t advocate for others, if I’m scrounging around for my kid.
Things are going to get tighter for families like ours. For families with less means and more severely disabled kids, situations will become dire.
I need a little more time to read everything and figure out specific details.
How will the cuts in the budget impact you and your family?
UPDATE: What to be depressed? Look at this chart.