In an ideal world we would like everyone to be treated equally, but this is not possible, and not just because of our mindset, but because of things like physical capabilities. You can’t expect a student with cerebral palsy to perform the same things in a physical education class as from an able-bodied kid and then punish them for disobeying.

This Redditor’s daughter was put in this exact situation and it seems that the school didn’t really care that they’d put their student’s health in danger and wanted to punish her for standing up for herself by trying to make her suffer physically.

More info: Reddit

Sometimes parents get overprotective and are a nightmare to deal with but the internet doesn’t think it’s the case with this mom

Image credits: Seattle Parks & Recriation (not the actual image)

The Original Poster (OP) is a mom to a 13-year-old daughter who has cerebral palsy. According to the CDC, cerebral palsy “is a group of disorders that affect a person’s ability to move and maintain balance and posture. <…> CP is caused by abnormal brain development or damage to the developing brain that affects a person’s ability to control his or her muscles.”

The mom explains that her daughter Amanda is able to walk independently, although not for long periods and only on even ground and otherwise she has to have assistance. And because of her condition, she is not able to do all the activities other able-bodied kids can, so she has an individualized education program (IEP) that lists those activities.

The OP’s daughter has cerebral palsy, which means she has limited mobility and there are activities she cannot do

Image credits: u/TA_AITA_BadMum

It seems that the PE substitute teacher didn’t know this and when Amanda explained she couldn’t climb up a rock wall because of her condition, he didn’t believe it. It probably didn’t help that another student said they also had the same condition wanting to avoid the exercise.

The teacher insisted on Amanda doing the exercise, to which the teenager lost her patience and started to swear at the teacher. Naturally, the school thought such behavior should be punished by detention.

The problem is that Amanda has to leave school at a specific hour to catch the bus that takes her home as the other drops her off about a mile away from her house and there is no footpath, which would be too much of a challenge for her.

So when the principal called OP to tell her what happened, she asked the principal to change the punishment, because the mom works until 6pm and her husband was away that day, so nobody could pick up Amanda at 4:30pm from school.

So when the substitute teacher wanted to make her climb the rock wall even though she told him to she couldn’t, the teenager started swearing

Image credits: u/TA_AITA_BadMum

The principal’s response was that Amanda walking a mile home after riding the later bus is just a natural consequence, ignoring the fact that this student isn’t able to walk just any distance on any surface.

While the mom agreed that swearing at the teacher wasn’t the best way to handle the situation, putting a student’s health in danger was even worse. So the OP decided to take Amanda home during her lunch break, making her miss lessons for the rest of the day.

When the school called back, they agreed on a lunch detention that wouldn’t make Amanda go home later. So the OP got what she wanted; however, her sister thought she was being a demanding and overprotective mom, so she wanted to hear the internet’s opinion.

The mom got a call from the principal saying she was being kept after school for swearing, which would mean Amanda would miss the bus she usually took

Image credits: u/TA_AITA_BadMum

People in the comments completely agreed that the school was in the wrong and the teacher, despite being a substitute, should have been informed about children in his class. People also pointed out that the mom shouldn’t have punished her daughter at all, being that she just stood up for herself after she explained why she couldn’t do the exercise.

People with disabilities often face ableism and sometimes if they don’t look stereotypically ill, their condition might not be taken seriously. So Amanda, being only 13 years old and being able to set her boundaries, showed just how brave she was when she only resorted to swearing after the teacher insisted on her climbing the wall.

After reading the comments, the mom posted an update and wrote that she apologized to Amanda for grounding her and explained why what she did was wrong, but didn’t blame her for that.

There was another bus, but it would have dropped Amanda a mile away from her home – which may not seem like a lot, but for a person with cerebral palsy, it’s dangerous

Image credits: SP DT ( not the actual image)

Image credits: u/TA_AITA_BadMum

Amanda actually responded very well and even decided to voluntarily write a letter to the principal apologizing for swearing, promising to use other words to make her point next time and, if all else fails, go to the SPED room for help.

She also opened up to the principal about being “feeling embarrassed and ‘called out’ and a whole host of emotions which made her feel like she ‘shut down’” after the teacher wouldn’t believe her.

So the mom just decided to pick up Amanda from school during her lunch break so as not to put her in danger because the principal wouldn’t change the punishment

Image credits: u/TA_AITA_BadMum

Sadly, the letter didn’t touch the principal’s heart and during the meeting with the OP, he didn’t call in the substitute teacher, he didn’t say what punishment the kid who lied about having cerebral palsy will get, and he suggested that this private school wasn’t the best fit for Amanda’s ‘limitations.’

The mom was already ready for that and before this meeting came, she had already toured another school and got everything in order to transfer Amanda to that school the following semester. The school assured her that they have experience with students that need accommodations, so there wouldn’t be any problems for her going from class to class or making an IEP.

The school finally agreed on a lunch detention, but the mom was accused of being annoying by her sister, so she asked the internet if she was being too demanding

Image credits: u/TA_AITA_BadMum

Image credits: Ian Dick (not the actual image)

Do you think the OP was being that annoying mom who thinks her child needs special treatment, like her sister said? Or do you think she had the right to do so as the school wasn’t following their own rules? Let us know your thoughts about the story in the comments!

Redditors not only supported the OP but thought that her daughter shouldn’t have been punished in the first place for standing up for herself