The Child Left Behind

The Child Left Behind

A Story by Megan S.
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They say no child left behind... hmmm...

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There was a girl- so small and gentle. Her name was Micca. She loved sitting and playing in trees, laughing about puppies that were too small for their feet, and kittens who thought they owned the world. Micca was simple, and her entire world knew it. She was happy enough to just sit in a window seat and look at picture books as her dad stared pensively at piles of papers.

Micca was eight when her life changed completely. Micca’s daddy left for some reason she couldn’t explain, and though she sat staring at the door all night, he never came back. It took her nearly a month before she realized that Daddy had left them forever. Micca came in from school one day to her mommy packing up boxes of stuff, and when she looked in her room, she found that everything was gone. So Micca asked her mommy what was going on.

“Micca,” Mommy said gently. “Micca, we’re moving to a new house.”

For a moment, Micca just stared at her mommy, and then she said, “But Mommy, if we leave, how will Daddy find us?”

She noticed the tears in her mommy’s eyes then, but couldn’t figure out why she was crying. She didn’t seem to be hurt in any way. Why would someone cry if they weren’t hurt? Micca didn’t cry unless she hurt herself, so Mommy shouldn’t either.

“Micca, Daddy isn’t coming back. Mommy and Daddy aren’t together anymore.”

 Again, Micca’s little brown eyes just stared at Mommy, and then she nodded her head making her pigtails shake a little. Then the little dark haired eight year old ran up to her room to search for her favorite little teddy bear- Akira, named for his old eyes and knowing smile.

She had found it one day playing outside, the day Daddy had left actually, just sitting beneath her favorite climbing tree staring up at the sky with it’s little string mouth smiling. She’d immediately decided she had to keep it, and Mommy always made her give the toys she found to a box called the Lost & Found.

That had never made sense to Micca. Obviously if the toys were in there, then they weren’t lost. Someone must know they were there. Anyway, Micca walked into her closet and let her hand snake down into the hole at the back corner and pull out the small teddy. She hugged it a moment and then went back to her mommy.

“Okay, Mommy, I’m ready to go now.” Her mommy looked from her, to the teddy, and back. It seemed like she was just about to cry again, but she just finished packing and bundled Micca and the rest of the boxes into their little car.

Micca moved into a new house at eight years old, but that could be considered exciting for most younger children. Though Micca had no real enthusiasm for it, she wasn’t upset either. No, Micca’s life didn’t change much that summer. She still entertained herself with climbing trees and staring at picture books.

Micca found her life much the same… until summer ended and she started school. Micca went to fourth grade at her new school that year, toting Akira along, smiling at her mommy, and waving as she drove away. She and Akira walked along to Mrs. Rachel’s class happy as can be.

When Micca went home that day, she wouldn’t say a single word. At first, Mommy simply didn’t notice. Micca had never been a loud child, didn’t even really like loud noises, so it was really normal.

Mommy started noticing that something was wrong when Micca didn’t want to go outside or read her books. So, she asked Micca what was wrong. Micca wouldn’t tell her Mommy, though. The only thing she’d say was that she wouldn’t go back to that school.

At first her mommy thought that it must be that the kids weren’t used to Asians, and that they had said something to Micca about her skin color. Micca’s mom went to the school the next day to talk to the teacher about what had happened, and Mrs. Rachel immediately asked Micca’s mom to come in to her office and sit down.

“Mrs. Liu,” Mrs. Rachel said before Micca’s mom could say anything, “I would like to talk to you about your daughter. I am very glad you are here.”

“Call me Mai, please,” Micca’s mom replied, and with the introduction formality over, immediately delved in with a question of why Micca had come home so distraught the day before.

“Mai, you’re daughter was very happy coming into our class, explaining how her name was pronounced “Mee-kuh”. She was all ready to read and play outside, and do fun things like that, but, ma’am, as we started having class, she started to get visibly upset.

“I asked her what was wrong, and she informed me that we weren’t supposed to be doing things with numbers, that I was supposed to read them a book. I simply told her that that wasn’t how we did it, and she said okay and tried to do the math on the board, something she was supposed to already know from third grade.”

Mrs. Rachel looked down at a paper and then back at Mai Liu who nodded for her to continue, sure that sometime soon they would get to why Micca had been unhappy.

“Mrs. Liu… Mai,” Mrs. Rachel corrected herself as she picked up the paper she’d been looking at and handed it to Micca’s mom, “this is Micca’s paper. I noticed the paper and gave the class free study time so I could talk with her. Ma’am, your daughter has never worked with numbers, and she can’t read at all. She knows her alphabet, but she has to work at it.

“I sent Micca to a room where she could be tested for how much she has learned over the year. When the test came back, it showed she was at a level of not quite a first grader. The other children laughed and made fun of her when they overheard me talking to her.”

Micca’s mom was appalled. For three years, Micca’s teachers had, as it turned out, let her look through books, read books to her, let her do things she wanted to do, and passed her on so she didn’t have to stay in a grade she shouldn’t be in. They’d lived in a small town, one that didn’t really have a special education program for the younger kids. It took a bit, but Micca was adjusted in a new special education class with other children at her level.

 

Hi, my name is Micca, and I just turned fifteen yesterday. I am dysgraghic, and I have trouble learning things without serious work. I have been in Special Ed since I was eight because I was slow. Through discipline and work, though, I’ve gotten myself to the level I should be at. I asked the teacher to let me tell you my story so maybe you’d understand who I am.

Today, I stand before you proving to myself that I can. Today, I stand before you as a peer and new student in a normal level, not special education.

© 2011 Megan S.


Author's Note

Megan S.
Just something I wrote when I was bored out of my head. It kinda sucks, I know.

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Added on May 5, 2011
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Megan S.
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I'm a simple teenage girl from podunk Arkansas trying to get by in the world of high school. I started writing as soon as I could, and I've never quit. Over the years, what writing means to me has cha.. more..

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