RAYVILLE, La. (5/16/19)– “We have cried. From pre-school up, all I ever wanted was to see this kid graduate. We felt like someone had died,” said Crystal Parker, Chase Parker’s mom.
Chase Parker and his family had dreamed of the moment for years, watching him walk at Mangham High School’s graduation.
Chase was ready for graduation. He had the cap and gown, he went to the senior luncheon, he even was on his way to graduation practice. But when he got there, the school told him that he wouldn’t be able to walk.
Just two days before the ceremony.
“The principal calls and says he can’t graduate, he can’t get his diploma– said he did not pass his English AOC test,” said Crystal.
Crystal says her son has always struggled in school because of his dyslexia and ADHD.
“It’s never been easy for him, but we honestly thought here we are, at the very end that you know, we’re done, it’s over,” said Crystal.
But the only thing that was over was Chase’s chance to walk with his class.
Crystal says the school knew about Chase’s learning disabilities but didn’t take the right steps to prepare him for testing.
“As far as his accommodations for his 504, none of that was done. I don’t know how they expected him to pass this test when they didn’t do their job,” said Crystal.
The Richland Parish superintendent released this statement that says, in part: “…no students will be allowed to participate in commencement exercises until they have successfully completed the requirements…”
Crystal says she called Baton Rouge and officials at the education office told her that normally, students who can’t graduate can walk without receiving a diploma.
She says Chase will be retaking the test over the summer.