School District Report


New Member
We just got the reports back from the school district. It is all so overwhelming! The reports dont say anything that we didnt already know. Basically it says that his Overall scores appear to indicate weaknesses in word and sentence structure and understanding basic concepts. Sammy does have a communication disorder.
The identified disorder is in expressive and receptive language.
These are the basic scores from the testing:
Scale Developmental Age Discrepancy from

Chronological Age (months)
Physical 26 months -11
Self-Help 22 months* -15
Social 28 months -9
Academic 34 months -3
Communication 32 months -5
The Psychologist also did some testing and observed him at his school which is a private school and basically what she said was she agrees with the other doctors and therapists that he is not Autistic. If it were to show later that he was on the spectrum, it would be very minor. She noticed his anxiety and Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD). She also said that he is "at risk" for Bipolar or ODD or other behavior/mood disorders. This is not a surpirse to us or anyone else that Knows Sammy very well. He only qualifies for speech in the school district because the other issues are non issues "in the learning enviornment" Hopefully his case manager will call us next week like they said and set up his ARD. Sammys therapist said he will come with us to the ARD to make sure that they actually do provide the services that fit Sammy's needs.
Has anyone been through an ARD? Any pointers I should know about before starting this? Again, I am not surprised by any of this report it is just weird to see it written in a formal report and there are so many things to process in my brain.
Again if anyone has any advice about the ARD, we have no idea what we are doing!


member since 1999

Just my opinion, but the SD absolutely should be providing Occupational Therapist (OT) and PT services as well based on physical and self-help skills. Early intervention is just so important, I cannot begin to stress that enough. I would really fight for those services in addition to the speech. They *are* issues in the learning environment (who on earth told you they weren't???) and absolutely do impact education. Not to freak you out further (I totally understand about seeing it in writing), but if you look at it as Sammy is only halfway to where he should be in self-help skills, and only slightly better in physical skills... how can he possibly function in Kindergarden if he maintains this gap or heaven forbid the gap widens? The potential for getting him back on track developmentally is better the younger you start - not a guarantee but... you don't want to wait until he's 6 and possibly has a much greater lag.

You probably want to post this over in sped 101 as well. I wouldn't hope for a call from case manager - I'd send a certified letter to sped director of your district requesting the ARD. That sets the clock in motion in terms of how long they have to get it scheduled.

The one thing I wish I had known 15 years ago about ARDs/IEPs - when they say they are going to provide 30 minutes of speech per week (or whatever) make sure it is specified on the ARD document if it is 1:1 or in a "group" setting or 30 minutes of "consultation" with- classroom staff. I was shocked to find out that Boo was supposedly receiving ST if the therapist was simply in the same classroom, LOL. Just something that will help you know what Sammy is *really* getting.

Good luck - let us know how it goes!


keep fighting for him. Research, read and be sure the SD is following the laws.

difficult child's psychiatrist said at our last appointment. that he really isn't convinced difficult child has bipolar, however schools have a hard time recognizing ODD as a real disorder ( with it, then tell me it's not real). so, I believe psychiatrist is putting bipolar down so difficult child can get the most benefits from the school district.

I do insist on psychological testing from school. That was done the end of last year. Same as you, nothing we didn't already know. Just good to have on paper, especially on his IEP. It helps him.

I do know if I wouldn't of researched the laws, and fought for difficult child..he would be in a heep of trouble right now. School doesn't offer any info, once you know the laws the SD is much more cooperative. It is a lot of work. But Sammy is worth it. Don't give in to SD..Keep fighting. There were times I though I was all fought out, was ready to just let them do what they wanted. But I kept on fighting. I saw things happening that would set of a non-difficult child. That will not ever happen again. I can guarantee that. Visit the classroom often, listen to Sammy. Things go on that the kids think is just the way it is done, when it is NOT the way it is done and they need you. Good Luck.


New Member
I did actually mention to him that about the self help skills and how I was worried about it affecting him down the road in the classroom. The SD definitely try and get away with the bare minimum dont they! Sammys therapist is coming with us or someone from their office who knows Sammy and is well versed in the ARD. The SD said something about the PALS program for speech. I am not exactly sure what that entails but the mentioned something about tues ths for 2 hours each time. If that is actually true then that would be good but who knows for sure. The good news is with the self help skills is that the therapy office will work on that with him too. They have a day treatment center so Sammy might have to do that as well. I dont know yet. Honestly I was hoping to go through the SD because it is not quite as costly as private therapy. As for the physcological report, I am just glad that she noticed the things I was talking about and that it is in a report so they can refer to it later down the road as Sammys diagnosis becomes more clear!


An ARD is an IEP meeting.

Very good idea to specify how the sessions are delivered, e.g., 1:1, minutes per session, nnumber of times per week.

There should be no cost to you. The sd is responsible for any fees involved.

It's good you will have someone accompany you.

There's information in the Sp Ed Archives about preping for IEP meetings.

He only qualifies for speech in the school district because the other issues are non issues "in the learning environment"

Most issues impact learning therefore the learning environment. What other issues are you referring to?


New Member
They are referring to his behavior problems, that they dont happen in school only in home and they are referring to his lack of self help skills and physical skills. They are not a problem to them in the learning enviornment or not yet...they will be becuase of Sammys behavioral issues at home, he is not receptive to our teaching and working on these things. He needs outside help with that.

I'm getting the same runaround from the school dist here. Tink has Sensory Integration Disorder (SID). But because the teachers have never SEEN any sensory problems with Tink, the school will not provide her with an Occupational Therapist (OT).



Well-Known Member
Sammy is very young yet. While his issues may not show in a school setting at his age now...just give him a few months or so in a regular kindergarten and Im sure they will. If not then, first grade. It will happen. They are shoving their heads in the sand if they think that self help skills and all that which are that far behind wont effect him in school. Also if he is that obstinate to adults teaching him can you imagine when he actually gets a real teacher telling him what to do!!! Yeah...anarchy!

He isnt in a challenging type setting where he is expected to perform like in a classroom. They cant possibly say what that will be like. Day care or even preK or whatnot is not true classroom work.


New Member
I dont get it. We all know that these are issues that will affect his learning in school. It may not this very second but down the road it will. I am really nervous about all of this because we are now entering a whole new world where we have zero experience or knowledge. I thank goodness that Sammys therapist is well versed in the art of the ARD and doesnt take any nonsense! This whole thing is so stressful. These people are not stupid. The test shows how much trouble we have at home with him and they know that he will not learn these things from us! They must know that this will affect his performance in school! This is crazy! Is it always like this at the SD?


Well-Known Member
Staff member
I think that it depends on where you live. The SD I teach in is very innovative and on the cutting edge of special education. I am amazed at how much is done for our special education stdents.

I do want to caution you on one thing. I don't think that you can assume that because you have trouble with Sammy at home that he will also have trouble in school. My difficult child was always a model student (graduated from HS with honors) even though her teen years were hellacious at home.

Some difficult children do well at school and are trouble at home. Some do well at home and have trouble at school. And then there are those tenacious difficult children that manage to create havoc everywhere. :grin:

If I had to have it one way or the other, I'd take the first kind. Of course, all in all, I would rather have not had a difficult child at all.



Active Member
Honestly I was hoping to go through the SD because it is not quite as costly as private therapy. As for the physcological report, I am just glad that she noticed the things I was talking about and that it is in a report so they can refer to it later down the road as Sammys diagnosis becomes more clear!

Did he qualify for Special Education preschool? Most of the time issues like self help are dealth with in the preschool setting and not in seperate therapy settings. Speech and Occupational Therapist (OT) are usually worked into the school day as well.


New Member
Sammy only qualified for speech because as the SD sees it, the rest "Does not affect his learning enviornment" which all of us know is plain silly! They reccomended some program called thePALS program which I dont know anything about. They mentioned something like he would go on tues and thurs from 10-12. IF they actually do that and it is 2 hours of speech and language I would be thrilled but again, I have no idea!


Active Member
I suggest copying this post on our Special Education board. Also include test results and diagnosis from your outside source (developmental pediatrician or neuropsychologist). What you've described about him and their refusal to offer full services doesn't seem to add up.