Iep - sos

Discussion in 'Special Ed 101' started by WearyWoman, Dec 2, 2010.

  1. WearyWoman

    WearyWoman Guest

    Hi all,

    This is my first post in this forum, and I'm hoping some of you veterans can make suggestions for IEP requests, as we have a meeting coming up. Our youngest boy, Bubby, age 9, is in third grade, and he has an IEP for his apraxia of speech and Pervasive Developmental Disorder (PDD) - not otherwise specified diagnoses. Presently, he is receiving speech therapy, limited Occupational Therapist (OT), and Special Education for spelling help only.

    We have our annual IEP meeting coming up shortly, and we'd like to be prepared with ideas for modfications to the plan, specifically, relating to additional accommodations for his autism spectrum disorder.

    Bubby has quite severe ADHD, and after school = after medications, and he is very overactive until bedtime. Homework is a real challenge in the evenings. His schedule is quite packed, as he has in-home and after-school therapy almost every night for 20 hours per week, and he goes to church class on Wednesday nights. His autism therapists help him with homework immediately after school most days when he is in after-school childcare waiting for us to pick him up after work. They have been semi-successful with helping him get homework done at that time, however, as I said, it's an overwhelming challenge for us later in the evening when we get home after work (5 p.m. or later). Bubby also needs a LOT of help with his social/emotional/behavioral/sensory issues. We constantly struggle to keep up with everything the school requires plus getting in time for his additional therapies.

    Academically, I think Bubby is falling more and more behind. He is having trouble getting his work done fast enough in school, and that's why he's bringing work home every night.

    While he definitely needs some help with reading and math, he struggles most with handwriting (he hates writing, probably because it is so hard for him), focusing on completing tasks, and spelling.

    Am I the only person who thinks that nightly homework assignments are over the top for kids this age? To do the required reading (20 minutes), math, show-and-tell, spelling sentences, etc., would take us an hour and a half easily with Bubby. It's just too much. He's at school 7 hours per day. I sure wish they could ensure that he gets his work done there because his medications wear off and it's next to impossible any other time.

    In addition to the homework issues, we're wondering what other reasonable accomodations would be helpful. Is it reasonable to request that he be allowed to type versus write sentences, stories, etc.? How much should we push for him to have an aide or more Special Education services? What about social skills assistance, especially at recess time or free play time, etc.? Boy, if anybody can provide some guidance here, I will be so grateful. We don't know what to ask for, and it seems like the school system does not go out of its way to serve in these cases.

    Thanks for reading, and I look forward to hearing your ideas.

  2. TeDo

    TeDo Guest

    I can only tell you what we have done with my difficult child, who I REALLY believe has Asperger's but won't have a definite diagnosis until we see the new psychiatrist in January. I will list them exactly as they are written in his IEP and hope they help.

    1. "difficult child" will be allowed to utilize assistive technology such as a portable word processor or voice recognition software such as DRAGON for all writing assignments of ten sentences or longer. Both will be provided by his Special Education case manager.

    2."difficult child"s assignments, quizzes, and tests should be modified. Modifications should consist of less problems than his non-disabled peers focusing more on key concepts, and extended time to complete all without penalty.

    These are the two formal accomodations that seem the most relevent to your situation. difficult child also hates to write, he has sensory issues and we recently found out he has carpal tunnel so he is refusing to write at all because he doesn't know how much writing he can do before it starts hurting. For work at home, they allow me to "scribe" for difficult child. He tells me EXACTLY what to write and I write it. It even works for spelling words because I make him spell them for me and I write down EXACTLY how he says they're spelled, right or wrong. I found the DRAGON computer program at WalMart for $50. I am thinking about getting it for home.

    The modified assignemtns have been a godsend. He is learning the material but not having to "prove" it by so much repetitive work. His anxiety level has gone down significantly since they implemented these changes.

    Hope this helps give you some ideas. Good Luck and let me know how it goes.
  3. Marguerite

    Marguerite Active Member

    We also found our kids had a lot of pain when writing. To such an extent, that when they had any writing task to do, the bulk of the kid's mental effort was spent in trying to calculate how to give the answer in the fewest number of pen strokes possible. So we had put in place that both boys could use a computer for all written answers more than a couple of words. The Dept of Ed actually bought a small word processor called Alphasmart Neo, on which to draft his responses. It is very simple, very cheap and very portable. It stayed at the school, changed schools when difficult child 3 did then came home when he transferred to correspondence (which is also public education, for us). The Alphasmart downloads via USB to Mac or easy child, as text only file. It's fast, it's easy. it has a small screen which can scroll the test, about three lines visible at a time. it has nine (I think) text file save options. He should be downloading these to another computer or printing out his responses then erasing the work anyway.

    With asking for use of computer, there are strict rules for us - the most important one, we have to prove there is a problem with handwriting. Either pain, or serious legibility issues. Some of these problems will improve with practice so use of computer is then not advised. But if it is the best that he can ever do and still not good enough, then use of computer is the next step. After that - you need to then demonstrate that he can produce work faster when typing, than when handwriting. For us this requires assessment by an Occupational Therapist (OT) to professionally determine the degree of problem, the type of problem and just how much better he can perform when typing than writing. Sometimes the school SpEd can do the typing/writing test - our Dept of Ed has guidelines on how to have this assessed.

    Homework - we asked for it to be stopped. Or if they insisted, we asked for difficult child 3 to be able to do homework over a weekend, because he could not work on schoolwork in the evenings. It can be insisted on, especially if there is a medical reason. But kids need their break times form school, difficult children doubly so. They shouldn't be spending all weekend doing homework.

  4. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    My son's diagnosis was actually Pervasive Developmental Disorder (PDD)-not otherwise specified. You have to do what you want to do. We let him do his English and math in the Special Education classroom because it was 1-1 and he could work at his own pace AND he was not surrounded by tons of noisy kids. My son is now 17 and he's done great, and is mainstreamed now, BUT he still complains when his classmates are noisy. He simply can not work with rustling papers, whispering kids, giggling, etc. It's part of his sensitivity to noise. I alerted his counselor so that maybe he can do his work in a quiet work room. My son had an aide until high school. He really didn't need it after about sixth, but the aide stayed in the back of the class and helped a few of the kids and my son learned to ask her if he needed more of an explanation of work or any help.

    As for homework, school itself was hard to sit through for my son. He tried very hard and did it nicely every day. We asked that he be excluded from homework. What they did was to put him into a quiet study hall where he could do his homework IN SCHOOL so that once he came home he was done. He could unwind. It was very helpful. j

    Good luck at the meeting. in my opinion ask for anything you want to add to your IEP.
  5. lmf64

    lmf64 New Member

    We have never done homework. In kindergarten I sat at a table full of teachers and admins and said I will not do the homework battle. difficult child has multiple dxs, and depending on who you ask and what day it is, they will vary greatly. difficult child spends the early part of the school day at a workshop to learn job 'skills' ie be on time, no sitting around, etc. He arrives at school about 11am, he then leaves with his 1-1 to walk a dog and gets back to school at 12. He then has lunch, followed by a half hour of free time, then he goes to his only real class of the day (when he choses to go, but that's a completely different story) ceramics this semester, back to his home base for a half hour of personal communications class with a group of students all somewhere on the spectrum and then he's home. It works for us.