Alternative program

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by Wiped Out, Nov 24, 2009.

  1. Wiped Out

    Wiped Out Well-Known Member Staff Member

    difficult child continues to struggle at school this year. I think I posted that at his conference they mentioned the possibility of an alternative program for difficult child.

    I'm guessing they must be leaning towards it because yesterday I received a phone call from the spec. ed teacher talking about three possible options for alternative programs. One seems to focus more on kids with mental health issues, apparently is new. So far I have not been able to find out much about the program other than it would include a half day at his regular school (all of the alternatives do that) and 1/2 dealing with other issues including therapy.

    husband definitely doesn't seem happy with the thought of difficult child not going to his regular school and I can understand where he is coming from. However, we both agree that if one of these programs would benefit difficult child we would be open to it.

    Hard to figure out what to do. We've always been told before (prior to this year) that the alternative programs are for kids who struggle more than difficult child (guess his are coming much more to the surface) and they didn't want him picking up any bad habits from the other kids.

    After today's incident, I'm becoming more convinced an alternative program might be in his best interest. Another student (also a difficult child) caught difficult child stealing a jolly rancher from a teacher's locker. When he called difficult child on it, difficult child kicked him in the shins, then when the spec. ed teacher told difficult child he can't do that, he started screaming at her at the top of his lungs. He then took off, shoved the student into a lost and found bin, and then dragged him. He ended up with an ISS and a detention (would be more if it weren't for his iep).

    Poor spec. ed teacher apologized in her email and said she promises start emailing us more positives as well.

    Sigh...Tomorrow I'll be calling the psychiatrist and letting him know how difficult child has been at school. Looking more and more like we may not be able to avoid hospitalization.
  2. timer lady

    timer lady Queen of Hearts

    Sharon, kt & wm spent the past, god knows how many years, in day treatment. Half school, half therapy.

    The reality is they weren't learning - even in the Special Education section of school because their illnesses/disorders were getting in the way. It's taken years but kt is now at college level reading, as is wm. wm is brilliant at math. AND they are still attending day treatment &/or alternative programs. (by the way, these programs are not well known - almost a secret even to the teachers in the district. Took an act of God to find the one I did for kt).

    Your difficult child is behind the 8 ball because of his issues. I know as educators school is very important - honey, his illness is getting in the way of learning.

    Keep us updated.
  3. Fran

    Fran Former desparate mom

    Sorry, I know this is a tough time. He is behaving inappropriately and is a danger to everyone around him.
    He functions as well as he does because he is surrounded by people who are there to stop him, cue him, guide him and praise him.

    As far as not being in the mainstream schools..... ask who does it serve for him to be mainstream when he isn't functioning at his best level. He may learn some bad habits but he has a few to teach too. Every parent says they don't want their child exposed to worse behavior but let's face it, our own kids are worse than some and better than some.

    We went through a lot of the same inappropriate behaviors with many,many schools both private and public. difficult child wasn't violent and wouldn't put a hand on someone but he ran, he didn't do work, was intrusive, way past hyper verbal and terribly disruptive. It was demoralizing to find one program after another couldn't find a way to help him belong and learn. Truth was until my difficult child nervous system settled down he wasn't really very teachable.
  4. Mandy

    Mandy Parent In Training

    It is good that you do have an alternative program and that sounds like a great option.

    Even though Little Bear is only in kindergarten he definitly was falling behind in fine motor skills, social skills, and all other skills. He had major aggression issues but it has finally stopped since we switched his medications, got him on his special bus, and got his IEP so that he spent less time in his regular class. Detractions were just too much for him and he wasnt learning as much.

    He is actually now catching up in all these areas and even though the school wanted him to spend as much time as possible in a reg classroom due to the "least restrictive law" it was just too much for him.

    Good luck and keep us posted! HUGS!!
  5. klmno

    klmno Active Member

    II really hope this ends up being a better solution for him. As far as the program- make sure you visit and talk to the director before approving it. It might not hurt to visit a couple while these are still being presented as options before the sd makes the final decision- so you can have input into which one he goes to, if any. Also, remember that as placement thru his IEP, you have a right to find a school that you think better fits his needs and present that as an option, too. Make sure you asked the director all the questions about how they discipline a child, type of therapy used, etc.
  6. Wiped Out

    Wiped Out Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Linda-You are so right-he really isn't learning right now. His behaviors are definitely not making him available to learning.

    Fran-You are right too-It does seem mainstreaming isn't really meeting his needs at this point. You're also right that we are worried about him being exposed to worse behavior and yet his behaviors are far from stellar. I think part of it is for all of his tough guy act he truly is so naive.

    Mandy-Thanks for the good thoughts!

    K-Good idea on doing the research before the sd makes the decision for us!
  7. TerryJ2

    TerryJ2 Well-Known Member

    Sharon, it sounds like we're reaching similar places with our g'sfg. I suspect since they are both 12, that LDs are surfacing that weren't as noticeable b4. For ex, when they were little, they memorized things--the alphabet, numbers--but now they have to use more abstract reasoning, such as writing papers, and doing pre-algebra. Quite a difference.
    Your programs sound pretty good. I'd go for it.
    I'm sorry about your husband. been there done that. I don't know what it is with-our husbands ...
  8. maril

    maril New Member

    Good luck with whatever you decide. Good points were made about researching and you having input, as far as the placement goes.

    The alternative school my son attended in the beginning of 2009 was initially described in a positive way by the home SD. Unfortunately, it ended up that we requested placement at yet another alternative school due to issues -- the home school district backed us on the switch. Presently, difficult child has progressed to the point where he will be able to return to his home SD and finish his senior year there; it looks positive.