Thursday, April 14, 2011

I wasn't expecting that...

Yesterday did not go at all how I had planned. In fact, I'm heartbroken, confused, and angry.

Yesterday was the IEP meeting for my dear sweet, Anton. With diagnosis in hand( verbal constructional dyspraxia, fine motor and planning deficits, and written expressive language deficits) I went merrily to this meeting thinking everything would be put into place to help Anton in the school setting to achieve any sort of work.

That, my friends, did not happen. There were 5 of us in that room. Myself, Anton's kindergarten teacher, a special education teacher who works with him, his RTI Math(also extra help) and the special services director of the district. EVERYONE in that room except one agreed that Anton needed help, and it was the general consensus that it was 1-on-1 help that would be best for him. Now, Anton is intelligent. He excels in math and he's really chugging along with learning his letters and reading, however, he doesn't produce anything in the classroom. He can't focus or keep himself on task without constant reminder or encouragement that he's doing something correctly.

So, we're all trying to figure out what is really best for him, what services the school should provide and what I can do outside of the school when up pops the special services director with "I don't feel he has a learning disorder" ...



Insert four very confused faces looking at her and all at once saying "what?"

And the kicker, the kicker the fired me up beyond belief, she adds "If he had a diagnosis of something like ADHD or Autism then there would be no question."



I kept my composure. I smiled. I cried. And I asked in the nicest tone I could muster
"Could  YOU please explain to me why for the LAST SIX months I have been taking my son to see an OT, he's gone to psychologist and neurologist to get a diagnosis. A diagnosis that YOU have RIGHT THERE in your folder because the SCHOOL recommended that it was BEST for my son to get a MEDICAL diagnosis versus getting one through the school. I'd REALLY appreciate you explaining that to me so that I can understand why the diagnosis he was given is not GOOD enough for you to provide him with services? Is it because it's not one of the many that are over diagnosed every day? Is it because it's not something you're familiar with so you don't want to deal with it?? Because I really DON'T UNDERSTAND what the problem is here."

She stares at me, blankly, and replies "Well what do you expect me to do? Do you want me to do an evaluation through the school?"

I wanted to slap her. Truly. I wanted to get up walk over to her and just SLAP her!!!! Why didn't they do this evaluation SIX MONTHS ago when it all started?? Why is she now wanting to do it when there is barely enough time to get the testing done before the school year ends.... oh wait, yeah that makes sense. Offer to do the testing now, that won't be completed until the end of the year(if it even gets completed) and hope that since we are a military family that we will move and you won't have to deal with the expense of giving him a 1-on-1 aid.

I am furious. I'm seriously at a loss at the disconcern with a child who is obviously struggling and barely hanging on. His teacher informed us that she would not be retaining him in Kindergarten and that he would be going to first grade because she doesn't think that repeating Kindergarten is what is best for him.

What are your thoughts? Do you think that a child who can not thought process, organize himself, or keep himself sitting still has a learning disability that needs to be addressed? Or should he just be ignored and forgotten because he wasn't diagnosed with something as over diagnosed these days as autism or ADHD?

Sorry for the rant, but I'm an upset mother.