IEP Meeting. Survived.

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by Shari, Apr 6, 2009.

  1. Shari

    Shari IsItFridayYet?

    The IEP meeting Friday lasted 3+ hours. I still would not call it finished.

    They have some decent goals in place, educational goals are limited. he will be starting quite a bit of Occupational Therapist (OT). The standard fare.

    I brought in our old in-home. He's good with the IEP process and he asked some tough questions they couldn't answer. They were supposed to have done an FBA, and its not completed, and he was suave, but got the point across that they can't hardly expect to explain how to deal with difficult child's behavior to their staff when they don't know what's behind his behavior. I hated that the SpEd teacher didn't like him, but he did get the principal's attention. SpEd Director has worked with him before and respects him greatly, so she had some positive things to say about his presence, which was probably good.

    They agreed to extend his half days to include the next class period, which is "specials" (music, pe, etc), starting today, but they refused to write quantifiable goals for him to acheive that will make him eligible to extend the day further. Flat out refused. So as of right now, we will get back together again in 4 weeks, I think it is, and "subjectively" decide if he's met some invisible set of goals that means he is capable of adding more time to his day.

    I asked what accomodations they had in place for his return to afternoon specials, since that was the time that was so awful and is the reason they knocked him back to half days. Principal and MainStream teacher didn't think he needed anything more than the aids. I said, uh, no. His last experience in the specials setting was awful every day - a 4 week break is not going to suddenly make him all positive about being there. How did they plan to make it succesful? Blank stares. Then, "the staff's had a 4 hour saturday class on dealing with bi-polar children, and they've been instructed on safe restraint."

    Ok, so how's that gonna make this transition successful. No answer, so I suggested I would come with him. Principal and Mainstream immediately said he didn't need mama. And I replied by asking the group, as a whole, if they could say with 90% that he could or couldn't make this extended day transition successfully without additional supports, and not a single soul replied. Principal's only response to that was that perhaps he doesn't need to come back, then, if we're worried about him behaving. Made me so mad. So I just told them I would be there for his additional time today and tomorrow and until whenever, and once he's comfortable and successful in it, I will hand it off to the aids then.

    Anyway, his half days are now 45 minutes longer, he'll start Occupational Therapist (OT), he has some additional accomodations in writing (where he sits is irrelevant, that kinda jazz), and I just know the eject button is primed and ready.

    I got there today to take him to the "new" class and he was locked in the safe room thing again. Yup, they got it under control. Principal was standing there and never once, in the 20 minutes I stood there, did he speak a word to me, not even so much as a hello. But I got difficult child thru the class just fine.

    On a happier note, I had a great girls weekend, and husband and difficult child had a great boys weekend. The former in-home called me and chatted for an hour or so after the meeting and when I suggested that I was beginning not to care for the principal so much, he replied by saying "was that the guy on your left? He was a *&%$ing @$$%@!*". At least I wasn't alone in that thought.

    All in all, it wasn't a bad meeting. I think we have a long ways to go, tho. The behavior plan is still a joke. Literally, a joke.

    Thanks for the prayers.

    Oh yeah, and they talked about summer school. Wee difficult child went to an early intervention preschool. His teacher there was so good that they used HIM as the role model student for others. But when we put him in summer school with a new teacher and class, etc, he fell apart. Not once has he had a positive experience in summer school. But this place wants him to go to summer school because "we've seen what happens when he's out of school for anytime", is what the principal said. Uh, no. You haven't. I have still not said a final no, but I can't see how they, who can't keep him in class right now, think that summer school, which has been a disaster of epic proportions every year (we've tried 3 times), even in settings that he's been successful in, think this would be a good idea. He would have all new teachers, kids, classroom, aids, schedule, etc, that will neither be like it is now, nor like the grade he's going into....I just think its a recipe for disaster.

    And to think, I really bought Principals "we're here for difficult child" routine...
    Last edited: Apr 6, 2009
  2. helpangel

    helpangel Active Member

    Wow Shari it sounds like they are playing the same games with you that our district has tried with me in the past. I hate when they do the "attend one hour a day" or "4 hours a day" crud (as far as I'm concerned school is my district funded respite) or how they will keep a kid at home twiddling their thumbs for 6 weeks while they arrange alternative placements.

    About the only thing I would have done different is when principal said "perhaps he doesn't need to come back" I would have jumped on that opportunity to ask school to pay for day treatment program - but not knowing what DT schools are available in your area it might not be the best placement.

    I think even though the extra hour doesn't have measurable goals being an elective type class won't matter if he can handle that extra hour without blowouts they can still increase time from there.

    Angel currently is transitioning from a daytreatment school and she does most of day at DT then goes at 1:00 over to home school for rest of day. In a couple weeks if does well home school time will be increased to include another hour and we keep going baby steps adding more time at home school until transition is complete.

    Your difficult child is so lucky to have a caring mom who is willing to deal with the school on their behalf, so many parents will just let the school write what they want into that IEP and go along with it. Good job mom!
  3. Marguerite

    Marguerite Active Member

    In some ways I envy you guys the "let's have him attend for only half days" drill. That is what I wanted, to transition difficult child 3 back to mainstream from being home all the time and throwing up at the mere thought of being at school. But I was told that it simply couldn't be done. At that time, the school was five minutes' walk from where we live.

    Then when it was time to transition him to high school, the principal said to me (in front of the Special Education staff) "Why don't we transition him half-time?"
    I remplied, "I have been told repeatedly that no such option exists," and we then heard a quiet coughfrom the Special Education person,
    "Well actually... we COULD do it, it's a good idea."

    I ripped her a new one. Told her that to consider it Now< when the school was an hour's DRIVE from where we lived, was totally impractical and setting up EVERYBODY for failure, and what the H had they been playing at all those years?

    OK, I'm just venting here.

    Shari, I think your attending is a good idea. Also, keep that principal on his toes. You can do it politely, but keep challenging him and making him SAY what he is obviously thinking.

  4. jannie

    jannie trying to survive....

    It sounds like a start...I really hope he does well with the specials...just out of curiosity did they check off modified day as part of the IEP? Truthfully I don't think they can allow or require a modified day unless the team decides on a modified day. However, I think the best plan is to work together with this IEP so that he is prepared for first grade this year. I would insists that he attends full day next year so please make sure the modified schedule is only in place until the end of the school year not the end of the IEP.

    Given all of his goals, objectives, and ED coding, are they planning on recommending an alternative program? such as a small self-contained class or do they still plan to educate him in the larger classroom which aide support. what types of programs are available in your county?

    Occupational Therapist (OT) sounds good, are they offering any related services in the area of social skills and/or anger management? did they add daily conselor support? someone needs to teach difficult child strategies to better handle himself and this can not be done with general ed teacher.

    YOu are making progress mom !! keep up the hard work ;)
  5. DaisyFace

    DaisyFace Love me...Love me not


    Kudos to you for being such a Warrior Mom! It's too bad you have to be, I know....

    It sounds like you are doing everything right. Keep up the good work!

  6. Shari

    Shari IsItFridayYet?

    I don't see where the modified day is even at on the IEP form, so I guess its not checked. lol He is in and out of the self contained room all day long. But as I think more about it, I think perhaps being in the self contained room all the time might be better, I just don't know.

    There is a "behavioral" school in the next district over...I think perhaps our district may contract with them? How do I find those things out? Like day treatment options, etc, that may be available? This "behavior" school has been there for years and hardly anyone knows it exists.

    They have not offered social skills of any sort yet, tho its on my list to inquire about, being the MD's said it was the school's job to provide it. He spends a few minutes every day with the counselor.

    Personally, I think they are putting the cart before the horse...they have to figure out how to physically keep him at school before educating him is really even possible...yet that's not even on ther radar. They don't want him there if he's not going to be an "active learner".
  7. helpangel

    helpangel Active Member

    With Angel it wasn't until the self contained teachers weren't comfortable having her there before they offered the day treatment school. I don't think they waited because they liked my kid or enjoyed getting bit or anything like that it's because that school costs my district a whole lot of money - whole school 64 kids & they have a psychiatrist & 5psychologists on staff in addition to teachers & lots of aides. Angel's class they have 5 staff for 7 students; that has to cost a fortune.
  8. gcvmom

    gcvmom Here we go again!

    Call that school directly and ask them about their services and their relationship to your district! They should be able to tell you. And they may even have suggestions for how to proceed with the school you're dealing with now.