This letter was sent to the board members, teachers, and other stake holders at Elmwood Village Charter School • It was the cover letter to a report I wrote about our complaint against the school • I will post the report in 6 installments • This is part 1 • If you would like to read the long, dang, pdf version please do so by clicking here
February 7, 2023
Stakeholders at EVCS Days Park
40 Days Park
Buffalo, NY 14201
Dear Elmwood Village Charter School Stakeholders,
We are writing to share our experience with Elmwood Village Charter School Days Park (EVCS) and to raise concerns about the unfair treatment of children with special needs at this school. My two sons, Sam and Cal, attended EVCS from September 2011 to June 2022. Despite having an IEP in place, Cal was not receiving the necessary accommodations and was punished for behaviors associated with ADHD. I withdrew Cal from in-person classes only to discover EVCS had failed to teach him to read and write.
As a result, we retained counsel and filed a Free Appropriate Public Education (FAPE) Complaint against the Buffalo Public School District and EVCS. We eventually received a placement that we desired as a settlement instead of proceeding to a hearing. Our story highlights the difficulties faced by students with ADHD, special education needs, and reading challenges. It is our hope that by sharing our experience, we can raise awareness and prevent similar situations from happening to other students.
In addition, our experience at EVCS highlights a broader issue of privilege and complacency within this school’s system. It’s reputation is safeguarded by not disclosing certain incidents, perpetuating a cycle of silence and complicity that benefits privileged students at the expense of others. This is unacceptable, and it is crucial that these systemic issues are addressed to establish a just and inclusive education system for all EVCS students.
I urge you to review the information presented here and take necessary steps to ensure that all students, regardless of their background, receive the education and support they need and deserve. Thank you for your time and consideration.
Lesa and David Ferguson