Sunday, March 28, 2010

Joy’s Week and My Ramblings

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I love my sister!




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Sammi was practicing her batting for softball and Joy wanted to take a turn.  Too cute!





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She plays what she sees.





And now my dilemma.  Preschool screening went fine.  My ECI coordinator had gone over with me what would happen.  And I’m grateful or I might have lost it.

An OT came and looked at our OT’s report and told me that they only deal with educationally goals and walked out.  We have been working on feeding/sensory/self help goals at home.   The PT watched her climb into a chair and then walked out.  What does that mean?  During the first three years of life, interventional therapy works on the whole child.  Once you turn three, it’s all educationally.  If she can get food to her mouth and get into a chair, then OT and PT consider her functional.  Joy receives private therapies – thank goodness – because they don’t consider “functional” a stopping point.  Socially acceptable and developmentally appropriate are more what we are shooting for.   Fortunately, because her therapies are private, she will be able to continue to receive them even after she turns three.  The actual testing was fine.  She didn’t perform as highly as she is capable of, but she got the drift.  She has some “good skills” according to the ST who did the testing.  We go back again in a month for the cognitive test and the formal diagnosis.  The diagnostician said at that meeting she will receive the diagnosis of Mental Retardation and Speech Impairment.  Labels and I have a love/hate relationship.  I know that they are necessary.  I know that they allow her to get extra help.  But when I look at Joy I see a smart and communicating little person.  All of this was fine.  What isn’t fine is that they told me what school she will be attending and it’s different than I was expecting.  There are 3 schools near us with Early Childhood programs, but no, they want to send her to another school further out.  As I have sought out information about this school, I’m not liking what I’m hearing.  There are two ladies at my church that work in the Special Ed department for our local schools and they are trying to get the skinny on that particular school for me.  But then our ECI coordinator reminded me that she doesn’t have to go to school.  She also told me that a lot of kids on the spectrum end up at that school.  That scares me – she sees and she does!  That is one reason inclusion is so important.   She told me that Joy has a good program going on here – right now.  She has all of her therapies in place.  She reminded me that I am an educator (I have an Early Childhood Education degree).  She said just look at her picture and all that is missing is the social.  Her suggestion for my Joy?  A Mother’s Day Out program that follows an NAYEC model.  Ugh!  In my mind I had seen Joy at school growing up.  But I want her in a good program with good teachers – and I don’t want to have to become “that mother” to get it for her.  I don’t think that I should have to.  Shouldn't the school district do what’s best for the child because it’s what’s best for the child?   Unfortunately, that is the one way to set off my mother bear – if I think that my kids are being messed with.   School doesn’t start till August.  We’ll see what happens.

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