Monday, 5. March 2012 20:03
The acronym “IEP” immediately makes me clench. And, with very good reason. The hoops my fellow blogging (I don’t mean that word to sound naughty, but it just does) Moms jump through, backwards, with aerial stunts, while on fire to get the services they need for their kids is unbelievable. As a result, I go into my IEP meetings (all two of them) with extra layers of antiperspirant and spackle in my crack to prevent the clenching.
Truth be told, we managed to have the luck of the Irish with us when we moved to St. Louis and got into the school district we did. During Ellie’s kindergarten transition IEP, there was a lot of talk about pulling out and pushing in. Not gonna lie, it made Ben and me raise an eyebrow. They really should rethink their terminology for those parents like us for whom Beavis and Butthead was created. Nonetheless, the new special education teacher is amazing and we are putting her in our will (I wonder what she’ll get with that $5).
Thanks to Ellie’s preschool teacher and staff, she met all five of her goals from her first IEP. They rock. Ellie is the first student her preschool teacher has had that will be in gen ed 100% of the time. Every time I hear “100%” a leprechaun gets gold, or a fairy gets wings, or an angel kisses a freckle or something like that. This is great because the more modeling she can get from her kindergarten cohorts the better (even if it means saying “butt” a lot) . Her special ed teacher will “push in” twice a week for thirty minutes to help Ellie with social skills. She will also provide Ellie with plenty of breaks. There will be a place in her kindergarten room to go to for some quiet time and to decompress and help with sensory issues. The teachers will provide visual schedules and cues for her to help her with transitions. We will reconvene after the first three weeks to see if this strategy is working or if we need to modify anything.
Prior to school, there will be opportunities to take her up to the building as often as needed, a trial bus trip will be provided, and parent volunteers set up social gatherings so the kids can meet and get to know one another. I’m wildly optimistic and also realistic. This will be a big change and with big changes come some new behaviors. But, to feel like I have a team of people looking out for us is a great way to start.