A sassy, crafty mama bird from Los Angeles
raising a very sweet little girl with Autism
and a new baby boy in the Midwest... and other stuff, too.

Friday, September 28, 2012

Not The Right Fit (part deux)

Hi there. Have you read my recent post called Not The Right Fit?  This post is the second part in what seems destined to become a series. Go ahead and read it. We'll all wait here till you are ready to proceed. Go ahead. *twiddling thumbs*

Little Bird had a dentist appointment one morning this week (no cavities!), so she was late to school. By the time I got her there, I walked into a classroom without kids, but where the teacher was meeting with the school psychologist... about my girl. So, I joined in on their discussion. Still very surprised that after a phone call and an email, this is the first time I'm hearing anything from the psychologist who has been assessing my kid. She explained that they're working to assess the girl so determine how to best serve her at her appropriate level of instruction (blah blah blah). She has a difficult time in this Mildly Cognitively Impaired class with following multi-step directions. For example, she had a task of writing her name on a worksheet, then cut out pictures of numbers, then match the number thats cut out to the number of items pictured on the worksheet. "She got stuck on the first step." me: "Ummmm, yeah. That's because she can't hold a pencil well due to her low tone. That's something that is in her IEP and the OT should be aware of and working on. Did she know how to spell her name? Did she match the number to the amount of items pictured? Yes? Oh, then it sounds like this is not an issue of not following directions, it's an issue of not being able to hold a pencil and/or trouble with cutting as reflected in all your paperwork on her indicating the fine motor delay." A few blah blah blahs later, and it appears they'd like to move her into the moderately cognitively impaired classroom. The kid who in kindergarten tests at a 5th grade reading level.

To reiterate: the reason I didn't put her into an ASD class is twofold: 1) I felt that it's too socially restrictive with not enough opportunity for social interaction due to the nature of the class dynamic (each kid is often separated into his/her own cubicle), 2) the evaluation team didn't certify her as eligible for ASD because of her social ability, interest, and awareness of others. At this point I think I will visit both the Moderate CI class as well as the ASD class and determine if one of these is a better fit for her that this current class. I feel confident in saying that the team that is currently working with her is not properly equipped to provide the best learning environment for my baby girl. So, if you will, please raise your glasses and toast to my entrance into the elite club of "teacher's/administrator's least favorite parent". Cheers!

I'm putting this out there because I'm counting on my fellow parents of kids with special needs, receiving special services in public schools sharing with me their experience, strength, and hope.


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