Friday, August 20, 2010

School Has Started!

First day of school pictures. He's so proud of his Toy Story clothes, backpack, and lunchbox.
One of the scariest parts of moving when you have a kid under the special ed. umbrella is the fact that you always have to wonder if the new school district will be able to meet your child's needs as well as the old one did. Then there's the part of you that hopes that the new district will be even better than the old district was.
It seems that we may have hit the jackpot and managed to get CJ into a system that is more equipped and prepared for children like him. What luck!!! After a conversation I had today with his soon-to-be Deaf Ed. teacher, I am really breathing easy.

I walked in to drop him off on the first day of school and mentioned to his teacher that he hadn't been ARDed yet, so there was no FM system ordered for him. "Not a problem. They're coming today to bring him an FM." Wow!! Many of you may remember the battle we had when CJ started Head Start and the FM was nowhere to be found...for weeks!
In addition to that, his teacher made a point to call me ahead of time and seek out my input regarding what he'd need in the classroom. She admits that she's never taught a Deaf student before. I let her know that was fine. I've never parented a Deaf child before CJ, either, but we seem to be doing okay so far. She seems very opened to learning how to work with CJ and insure success for him.
As we were talking, I described some of his wacky sensory issues. "Why hasn't he had an OT working with him?". "Well, our last school said it wasn't academically necessary". "Okay, we'll have the OT and the PT come observe him and decide what they think." Really?? Services being offered (even suggested!) without a fight?? Someone pinch me.
Today I got a call from his Deaf Ed. teacher. She is already on the job with him. She went and visited with him today, provided his teacher with lots of valuable information, set him up with his FM, ordered his IEP meeting, and made contact with me to inquire about what we'd be needing for him. Again, WOW!!!
We took CJ to the oral Deaf school in the area right when we moved here so he could be tested. They found a few issues with him.
*He is developing a lispy sound when he tries to say [s]
*His expressive skills outweigh his receptive, so he easily fools you into believing he understands everything you say.
*When he doesn't really hear something the right way, he just chooses another word that sounds similar and assumes that's the word you meant.
*He needs some work on his auditory processing.
While I appreciated the testing and the suggestions, I knew I was in for an uphill battle getting the school to implement those suggestions. When his teacher called today, she said "I've also looked over his testing from (the school), and have contacted the speech department to implement their suggestions. I'll be conducting the rest of the needed work for him". I was shocked, almost speechless. (Almost, people. Don't get all shocked that I was at a loss for words.)
So, there you have it. We are three days into first grade, and things are going well. I think we are in a place that is fully prepared to work with him and help him succeed. What luck!


  1. Happy to see that things are going well for you all. Hope he has a wonderful school year!!

  2. What great news! It sounds like you have a great team in your new district!

    Nolan's receptive lags behind his expressive, too (though his receptive is still totally age appropriate). The length of his sentences makes people think he understands at a much higher level than he does, though, lol!

  3. Wow - they sound amazing! I always wanted to be that teacher that was allowed to just tell the parents what services were available for their kids, or be in a district that supplied what the kids actually needed instead of having to fight for them! Hope he has a wonderful year!