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Victory (updated 11/11/11)
Haven't updated this in a while...
Michael has done so well this year! I was right. Go figure. I mean I'm just his mother. What do I know, right?
Sarcasm aside, the school year last year ended w/ a huge meeting in which I pointed out Michael's issues and his associate's lack of ability to deal with him. She allowed him to lay on her for heaven's sake. Granted he is a loveable, cute little boy but her job is to help him in school, not to be another Grandmother.
So in front of Principal Liar's subordinates and the head of the Special Ed program for the district as well as multiple people from the GWAEA, I called him out. I told him that this wasn't working. I told him that I had informed him all year and nothing had changed and that the associate wasn't doing what the district was paying her to do.
Guess what. Got associates that work w/ us this year and Michael is excelling. He gets perfect scores on his Math and reading. Report card was AWESOME!
Socially, he still struggles but what an improvement. And do you know what he asked me in front of his teacher the other day? He asked if he could be an astronaut when he gets big. And then when he's been an astronaut, he wants to be a police officer. I told him that he would have to work very hard, but he could do it. And his teacher smiled and nodded.
We had a meeting with principal liar this week. Although I didn't call him out directly, I think we got our point across and most importantly, he knows we aren't blind to what's going on and are watching. Hopefully that will be enough.
My husband and I are going to start going to school board meetings in the hopes to get some of those folks familiar with who we are. That way if we need to get more people involved (ie. superintendant) he will already know who we are.
I have contacted the CR district. There are two schools there that have autism rooms at the elementary level. Unfortunately, you can't open enroll there as they are already packed to the gills. If we lived there, I think it sounds like a great program. Anyone have experience there they'd like to share?
I am so tired of the local Education Agency and the Principal of my son's school. My son has been in the district since he was three and a half. He started there in the Early Childhood Special Education Program half days. The unique thing about our district is that it stretches clear across the county. We have five elementary schools but just one middle and high school which are both on the western most edge of the county. So when we started Michael in the district, the ECSE program was at a different school than he currently attends. In that school, teachers were accustomed to dealing with special needs children and adapting their teaching to them. His current school wants to pretend they aren't there.
My son deserves better. He has adhd which we are getting medication for. The IEP that we wrote directed that he needed a one-on-one associate to help him at all times. He is a wandering risk, has trouble staying on task, and still has trouble remembering to take turns speaking and raising his hand.
I have given the school enough time to get things implemented. I have complied with anything they have asked me for. I have been forthcoming with information regarding what are or are not doing for treatment. It is the school and AEA's trun to help. I haven't been getting regular updates, his Gen Ed teacher is not forthcoming with information, and his one-on-one associate is untrained. It is TIME!
I am going to contact the local Parent Educator Partnership and get an advocate. These people are trained to help parents know how to get what is needed for our children. I need help knowing what other things need to be put into Michael's IEP. I need help wording it correctly and it's time for me to admit that I can't do this alone. I need someone with expertise.
I'm going to call a meeting with the Principal and ask him one more time to help Michael get what his IEP advisor and I know he needs. I will include the AEA worker, and the advocate I have hopefully by this time started working with and see what I can get pushed through quickly. We've already lost half a year!
If I don't like the results of Step 2, I will be calling a formal IEP. I will ask for a new, complete evaluation. Then, depending on who does it and what their recommendation is, I won't be afraid to make them pay for an independent evaluation to get recommendations from the University of Iowa. I will be brave and push for what I know Michael needs.
I'm ready. Michael is so important, I will NOT allow some overpaid Principal with no experience with amazing children like Michael squash him and my family. It is time to let out Mama Bear and show him that I'm willing to fight for my son and will not be bullied. I will fight.