How do I change this?

Discussion in 'Special Ed 101' started by DS3, Mar 6, 2012.

  1. DS3

    DS3 New Member

    Currently difficult child has an IEP for speech therapy ONLY. But his teacher is complaining that unless she works with him one-on-one, he doesn't do his work. Mind you, what they are asking him to do is write the 'letter of the day' at the top of the page, and draw a few pictures that start with that letter. The teacher presents which letter they should be working on, and also offers drawings of items that start with that letter. So all he needs to do is write a letter, and draw a picture or two.

    Here's the issue. If left on his own, he just scribbles away, and doesn't do any of the stuff he has been asked to do. OR he draws one picture on top of the other, so it all ends up a squiggly mess anyways. She says she can't sit down with him every day to make sure he does his work. She has an assistant for part of the class, but even then it's 2 vs 14.

    Anywho, his ABA therapist has been working with him with fine motor skills. Which is really what the kid needs to learn. His main point when I brought up what the teacher said was 'how do you expect him to draw when he can't write?'. It is a good question.

    Mind you, he gets 1 hour a week with an Occupational Therapist (OT) who does Neuro-BioFeedback. I talked with them last night, and they said he has improved overall, but that they have only been working on the right hemi-sphere because we needed to conquer the emotions first. So at his next session (friday), they will start working on the left hemisphere which should help the fine motor skills, the attention, etc.

    His psychiatric has changed his medications. He takes one 25mg Adderall XR, as well as one 5mg Adderall (not extended), which is to help it kick in faster. I notice a big difference in the afternoon, as I'm not ready to pull my hair out. But it doesn't seem to kick in fully by the time school starts, which is why they added the regular and not extended to take as well. He still has his on and off days.

    Anywho, what I need to do is: Get him evaluated by the Occupational Therapist (OT) at school. Problem is, there isn't one on the premises. But there are quite a few in the district. I was told by my advocate that if there isn't one on the premises that they have to basically 'transfer them in temporarily' to work with my son. Which I need to request in writing.

    Also, I need to somehow get it into his IEP that he NEEDS the one-on-one. Otherwise he doesn't do his work.

    So how do I do all of this?

    I'm really tired from not sleeping well the past few nights, and recovering from my cold. And help/advice welcomed.


  2. keista

    keista New Member

    Are any of the teacher's comments in email? If so, that's pretty much all the ammo you need. When difficult child has someone right there, he' does the work, otherwise - nothing. If nothing is in email, I suggest you start contacting teacher via email and get her to mention it.

    in my opinion it sounds very cut and dry that he needs and would qualify for one on one, but the teacher can easily backpedal UNLESS she put it in an email. Also if any of this work makes it home, keep it in a folder marking if he got 1on1 that day or not.
  3. buddy

    buddy New Member

    oh for sure he needs an aide. If he can do the work and be successful with this one little change, then it is the least restrictive thing to do.

    I hope they respond well to your requests. the teacher should be able to document the need....soooooooo...... (still the optimist even in the dark days, LOL)
  4. TeDo

    TeDo Guest

    Document the teacher's comments including date and time and quote what she said to you as close to verbatim as you can. Put a request in writing sent certified mail with return receipt requesting "an IEP meeting to discuss recent issues that have been brought to your attention that require changes to the IEP". That would be where I would start. Then at the meeting you bring along a written request for academic and Occupational Therapist (OT) evaluations for them to sign and date (1 copy for you, 1 for them, they sign & date both). Also bring along your documentation of teacher's comments AND evaluations/recommendations from you private Occupational Therapist (OT) in regards to the issue.

    Good luck!
  5. DS3

    DS3 New Member

    I only have one comment on one of his projects that state that 'most days he is unable to complete this activity. His drawings aren't clear yet, and he really does not focus on doing his work.' This is on a project that is like a 'journal'. There is one page that says that the teacher helped him out (which is the only good page in it). I haven't kept a record of the verbal between me and the teacher. Would this work? Would it help if I had something from his ABA therapist who says he needs Occupational Therapist (OT)? ~sigh~ I'm so busy lately with all of my appointments, I haven't had much time to look into this. Being sleep deprived ontop of it... it's taking me a minute to process. LOL. Thanks for the suggestions.
  6. TeDo

    TeDo Guest

    Keep that (it's her writing it herself) and START documenting all verbal communication from this point on. They can say "that is one incident" so you need to gather more info to prove it's an issue, not a one time thing.
    You can try that but there are school districts that won't even consider outside others here lately have run into. A statement fromt he ABA would come into play after they "screen" him and determine he DOESN'T need services.
  7. JJJ

    JJJ Active Member

    I would suggest getting the assignment modified.

    For example, his sheet would have the letter of the day written faintly so all he has to do is trace it. Then have 2 faintly pre-drawn pictures that he can either trace or color. In the last spot, have a thick bordered box for him to draw a picture in. If he still has trouble getting a picture in the box, trace the border with glue and allow it to dry (the night before) so he has a tactile border.
  8. DS3

    DS3 New Member

    That's a good idea... but that would have to be in his IEP wouldn't it? Literally, the only thing in there is speech therapy. Nothing for modified assignments, behavior, anything.

    And I'll start keeping track. Hopefully it will turn out alright. It took me half the school year just to get him an IEP, I'm hoping it doesn't take the last half to get it changed.
  9. buddy

    buddy New Member

    Accommodations on an IEP can cover anything related to his needs.
  10. DS3

    DS3 New Member

    I do know that. It's just that it isn't in there just yet.
  11. DS3

    DS3 New Member

    So I had a conference with the teacher yesterday. Seems that difficult child knows how to do the work. And he's definitely motivated to do so. Just he doesn't want to and then refuses to do it. That's his ODD. And it's showing up more and more in the classroom. How do I fix that? I don't even know if I put something in his IEP if it would help. I know he does do better with the 'one on one' but that is more or less reinforcing the 'helpless' show he puts on to get more attention. He'll work fine at home as long as me or dad sit with him... ~sigh~ seems like a catch 22.
  12. InsaneCdn

    InsaneCdn Well-Known Member

    Stupid me, but... maybe he's really "too young" for the class? Being a premie and all, then add in some slight developmental delays (that's usually what the motor skills issues are)... It might be his way of "fighting back" against expectations that really are above his ability?
  13. DS3

    DS3 New Member

    Here's some more information in regards to this (after looking at the notes I took yesterday).

    So this is what I found out: difficult child does not WANT to do his work. It's not that he doesn't understand it, nor does he 'not get it'. He just doesn't want to do it. He'll start it, then just decide not to finish it. Now he will work fine if you sit one-on-one with him. He just wants the 'extra' attention. And the 'extra' reinforcement. This would be where the ODD is showing up in the classroom. I was also informed that He's more adverse to doing any type of paperwork, he's fidgety, wiggling in his seat, hyper-focused on something other then his work, and that he seems restless. In regards to fine motor skills, I was told that he is 'age appropriate' per the teacher. He still scribbles, and while he can color within the lines, he just doesn't want to (lack of fine motor skills here to a point). Same with his letters. He seems to have a lack in this area, but it is 'normal' for boys to be 'slower' in this area then girls. So says his teacher. Then again, his teacher isn't an Occupational Therapist.

    So what do I do? Is there any 'fixing' to this? Is there anything that we can put into his IEP to help this? Sorry, I'm a bit exhausted, and feeling a bit lost as to what to do.


  14. DS3

    DS3 New Member

    I was wondering the same thing. But it's not like he doesn't 'get it'. He knows his letters, numbers, small math, reading small words, etc. It's just the paperwork. Cutting, writing, drawing. ~sigh~ I just don't know what to do. Or how to even help him. That's the frustrating part.
  15. InsaneCdn

    InsaneCdn Well-Known Member

    I get it. It's my difficult child all over again. NOBODY would believe us. But... between the motor skills issues and the un-diagnosed Auditory Processing Disorders (APD)... school almost killed him.

    The argument - over and over - was that because he "can", he therefore "can" all of the time.

    The ODD behavior? It's survival instinct. They KNOW too much is being asked of them. And having the one-on-one isn't necessarily the answer - that just becomes the "slave-driver", and problems will then show up in other ways.

    How many minutes a day to they spend with fine motor skills activities? writing, drawing, painting, cutting, using "tiny" blocks, etc.? We figured out - about grade 4 or so - that five minutes out of an hour was MAX for our difficult child.
  16. DS3

    DS3 New Member

    I was told by the teacher that this week was an exceptionally heavy workload week of fine motor skills. And that it wouldn't be so hard next week. So probably most of the time that he's in school, which is 3 hours. But when they finish their work, they're allowed to play and do different activities that interest them. It's just 'if' difficult child will do his work now.
  17. InsaneCdn

    InsaneCdn Well-Known Member

    On a three-hour day? If he has severe motor skills problems, he shouldn't be spending more than 15-30 minutes TOTAL on that stuff. He would do far better with GROSS skills work... and they CAN overlap. For example, instead of pencil-and-paper, can he do his writing practice oversized on the whiteboard? in the sandbox? He needs to form the letters and draw pictures with his ARMS, not his FINGERS, right now. We had specialty Occupational Therapist (OT) consultants tell us this... that they have to learn at the gross level first.
  18. amelia

    amelia New Member

    Since he is getting ABA therapy (at home?) is he diagnosed with autism? If he is, is the school district aware of this? Most schools will implement specialized interventions for students with autism so they can function in the regular ed classroom. Alternately, some areas have specialized programs specifically for students with autism.

    Is the ABA therapy being followed through at school. Any behavior therapy will be much more helpful for the child if it is consistent whether the child is at home or at school.

    He is getting Neuro-BioFeedback at a therapists office? The Occupational Therapist (OT) doing the Neuro-BioFeedback must have been specially trained to provide biofeedback services, as this is not generally the type of service Occupational Therapist (OT)'s provide. Occupational Therapist (OT)'s working with students in school do not do Neuro-BioFeedback, so really , right now he is not getting Occupational Therapist (OT) services.

    Occupational Therapist (OT) services are provided to students when need is determined. You requesting an Occupational Therapist (OT) evaluation should be enough to get the ball rolling. If the evaluation determines that services are indicated then they will hold a meeting and put Occupational Therapist (OT) services on his IEP. Most Occupational Therapist (OT)'s in a district travel from school to school, so one not being in his school right now would only mean that none of the students in the school are getting Occupational Therapist (OT) at the moment.

    What is his classification on his IEP? This will also help determine the appropriate services. I would assume he is not classified as autistic or he would be getting more help than just speech services. If he is not autistic why is he getting ABA?

    To have a 1:1 aide it would need to be determined that because of a specific disability the student is unable to function and succeed academically without the direct intervention of a adult at all times. It is considered a very restrictive service and it is many times not in the best interest of the student. It hinders the students ability to function independently both academically and socially. Would redirection and modification of assignments help? And of course Occupational Therapist (OT) would help with the fine motor skills.

    Your first step would be to request an Occupational Therapist (OT) evaluation, his fine motor difficulties are enough to justify the request. Once this is completed a meeting would be held to add Occupational Therapist (OT) services to his IEP, and at that time modification of assignments and any other appropriate accommodations would be added to the IEP. Stay calm, be polite, write down your concerns. The professionals really do want to help and the more info you give the easier it will be to draft a program to address your son's specific needs.

    Sending you hugs and positive energy.
  19. buddy

    buddy New Member

    A 1:1 aide is not the only type of aid available though. And it is possible for an aide to not be on top of the child at all times, but to set things up, to watch and help when things start to derail etc. It is not more restrictive than a special needs class for some so depends on the situation. Many kids share an aide in a classroom. The aide can make it so that the child can be in a general education program (or any classroom) if they just need some cues. That said, there are situations where an aide can become the teacher the "peer" the everything to the child. It can become something that makes the child super dependent on an adult and even resentful and upset at being treated differently (not usually in preschool though)... It is something to be very specific about and something that needs to be monitored.