One mother shares her concerns about Accomack County’s ability to set her son up for success in school
ACCOMACK COUNTY, Va. – In Accomack County, one mother is fighting for her child’s academic rights.
Charmonique Hamilton tells us her eight-year-old son has autism and the school isn’t accommodating his needs. “The school is Accawmacke Elementary School. They are not handling this good whatsoever, there is not the proper care on hand on duty, at the school they will say we have behavioral specialists, and they will say we have everything to access Kha’Zhuri and any other child that’s in need, that’s battling with autism and ADHD but every time there’s an incident or meltdown there is no behavioral specialist, nowhere on site, nowhere on duty,” says Hamilton.
Now she’s asking, does the school even have the resources for her son to be successful?
“Where are the necessary needs to help him? There is none,” says mother, Charmonique Hamilton.
Who is Kha’Zhuri?
She is looking for help for her son, 8-year-old Kha’Zhuri, who attends Accawmacke Elementary School. “He is autistic, has ADHD, is developmentally delayed, he is also behavior. He really needs, not around-the-clock care but he needs assistance,” Hamilton says.
And because of Kha’Zhuri’s learning challenges he sometimes has episodes in school. Kha’Zhuri has had a meltdown, he has flipped his desk, he has thrown things, and no one can take in and help with the situation then I ask the question where are the behavioral specialist?” she says.
Kha’Zhuri does have a Behavioral Intervention Plan in place which Charmonique says the school is not following. She says they tell her it’s because they don’t have the resources to follow the plan. In fact, when Kha’Zhuri has a meltdown in school, she says he’s been suspended. “It’s hard it’s really hard, him not being in school it’s hard on me, again how do I help him? He’s home, he’s not getting an education,” Hamilton says.
While Charmonique wants to ensure Kha’Zhuri can thrive outside of the home, she worries if the school can’t provide for him, who else is getting left behind? “I feel if I don’t voice my opinion and If I don’t speak for him, who am I as a mother?” Hamilton questions.
At this time, she is urging the school to simply tell her if they have the resources or not. “If you all have these resources that you say you have, use the resources, if you don’t have the resources, be upfront with me and say no I don’t have the resources here, and then direct me to has the resources so I can get him the best help that he needs,” Hamilton adds.
Her son’s education is just one fight. Charmonique has also been given a no-trespassing order for all County schools. “Kha’Zhuri got suspended September the 14th he was suspended for 3 days and then with that being said, I did not send him back to school because on the 16th, I received a no trespassing order,” she says. The notice doesn’t explain why but she tells us it’s because of her continued fight for Kha’Zhuri’s academic rights.
47 ABC reached out to both Accawmacke Elementary and the Superintendents office, who both declined to comment calling it a personnel matter.
Charmonique says she does have a behavioral intervention plan meeting coming up next week, October 14th. She’s also waiting to hear back from the school board about her no-trespassing order.