IEP Services for Asperger's Syndrome

Discussion in 'Special Ed 101' started by 1 Day At a Time, Dec 16, 2007.

  1. I would like to ask for some advice from those of you are experienced with IEP planning for your difficult children with Asperger's Syndrome. My difficult child is newly diagnosed and is a high school student. I have taken his evaluation to his counselor and the system psychologist. The counselor at his school is already saying that we can probably just stick with his 504 plan for his physical disability and nothing new is needed. I think not!

    His current accomodations are only for extra time to get from class to class, extra textbooks to keep at home, and use of a PDA in class. I think it is important that his teachers understand his behavioral issues - so I think information for them is important to have. What other types of services have you found to be helpful?
  2. svengandhi

    svengandhi Well-Known Member

    My son is a HS senior who was diagnosed in grade 8. After a disastrous freshman year at the local HS, we moved him to an out-of-district public sped school (draws from a number of SD's in the area). He is still brilliant and unmotivated, but should be graduating HS in June with a regular diploma and, hopefully, going to community college.

    His program is an 8:1:1 and his services are extended times for tests and counselling, almost every day if he needs it. The teachers in his school WANT to work with these kids and are inordinately patient and giving. Yes, the work is toned down so m son did not learn physics and chemistry at the same level as in the regular HS, but honestly it's no matter - he does not plan to pursue a future that involves either of those.

    In your situation, I would ask for regular counseling with someone who is experienced with Aspies and I would sit down and meet with all of his teachers at the beginning of the school year, provide them with some (brief) literature about AS, let them know they can contact you any time. If he is as bad as my son about HW, I would ask for some kind of HW sheet to be sent you weekly or whenever.

    And now the opinion that I have evolved to over more than a dozen years in the school system - mainstreaming is not always for the best. My son spent grade 9 at the local school because his dad was not willing to accept that the HS life was NOT for him. I had wanted to send him to this other school in grade 9. My husband changed his mind the day the school counselor called and told us that a very nice young girl had told her that she sat down next to my son at lunch and he said to her: "Why do you want to commit social suicide by sitting near a pariah like me?" The girl was so upset she went to a counselor because she thought my son might hurt himself. He has NEVER been suicidal, thankfully.

    Anyway, at this school he has PEERS, he has FRIENDS! He goes to the movies and iceskating with a group of kids and now that he drives (and quite well), he is even more popular. This past weekend, a friend of his from this school who is now in college studying culinary arts came down with a friend to help us prepare a catering order. The brother of another friend he met at this school came to help. I wish he had been in this kind of environment for a longer period.

    This would never have happened at the local school. My daughter is there now and I see how it would have been for him. My daughter is kind but many kids are not and even the ones who are not overtly cruel just ignore kids like my son.

    Sorry to prattle on, but I just feel it is so crucial that Aspie kids have PEERS. So many people talk about being around neurotypical kids and that is important, too, but if your school can offer you a "Circle of Friends" group consisting of peers and select NT kids, that might be the best service you can get. Some of the kids at my son's school are not Aspie but have other issues like Tourette's, bipolar, severe Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD), panic disorders, etc. He is learning to deal with all types of people and their issues.

    Good luck.
  3. SRL

    SRL Active Member

    I do agree that it would be beneficial to have his educational label changed to reflect both disabilities.

    What areas is he struggling in (speech, social, organization, grades, life skills, services until 21, etc) that you would like to see addressed?

    For all it's other imperfections, I have to say that our SD has a wonderful Autism program, including teacher training. Your best bet is to get ahold of some local parents of teens with Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD)'s, either through the Autism Society, school programs, or word of mouth.
  4. SearchingForRainbows

    SearchingForRainbows Active Member

    difficult child 2 was recently diagnosed with Asperger's Syndome too. (Although difficult child 1 is also an Aspie, he is much higher functioning than difficult child 2. We really haven't asked for much help from our SD with difficult child 1. As a result, I'm also just learning what services the SD should provide for difficult child 2.)

    It took us four months to get an appropriate IEP for difficult child 2. And, even now, I truly believe he needs more services than the SD is willing or able to give him. We managed to get him weekly counseling sessions to deal with all of his behavioral problems. He is also in an after school social skills program. We put him in classes that are co-taught by the classroom teacher and a sped teacher. We are hoping that in a co-taught classroom, his behavioral problems will finally be addressed instead of having the staff walk on eggshells around him and try to avoid outbursts as in the past.

    We are going to meet after the first of the year to write a transition plan for him as he'll be 16 in about four months. I'm very concerned he isn't going to get all the help he needs with daily living skills through our SD. In fact, I was going to post about this tonight but am really tired so will probably be back here tomorrow.

    Personally, I would love to have difficult child 2 in a private school taught by specialists in Autism. However, I don't have the money to send him to one or to fight for an out of district placement.

    I'll be keeping an eye on this post. I hope you're able to get your difficult child the services he needs. WFEN
  5. svengandhi

    svengandhi Well-Known Member

    I didn't pay a penny to fight for either of the out-of-district placements I have. My 6th grader is at a private school for kids with LDs, primarily dyslexia, and no behavioral issues.

    I documented and kept having meeting after meeting for my oldest son. I think they just wanted to get rid of me and if it took shipping my son out, well so be it. I also went to every placement they sent me to, no matter how inappropriate so they couldn't say I didn't cooperate.

    My Aspie-like son was fairly easy to get into a OOD placement based on what I have heard on the board here, but that's because his is considered public school. It's a consortium of districts who pool resources to educate kids that would fall through the cracks. If one district has one or two or three of these kids and 40 districts get together, they have a school and that's where he is.

    The 6th grader's placement was tougher because the private school and busing probably cost about $40K a year. They tried to convince me the middle school could service him, but I knew it couldn't. He's too high functioning for self-contained but requires too much support for regular gen ed with an every other day resource period (the only options). I believe I actually got it because we are still within the statute of limitations for the assault my now 8th grader's math teacher committed against him when he was in 6th grade and the SD really doesn't want me to sue. There actually is an inclusion program but it's taught by the same team as the assault teacher and we weren't going there!

    Have you consulted an advocate? How about your local autism group? They may have resources or ideas on how to find and get him into a more beneficial school situation.