Worried about FBA

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by pepperidge, Jan 4, 2011.

  1. pepperidge

    pepperidge New Member

    Hi difficult child 2 is due to have a FBA (and safe schools assessment) as a result of his actions before Christmas (punched two kids without a lot of provocation). He is generally very impulsive, trying very hard socially to fit in but is developmentally delayed--high functioning Fetal Alcohol Effects (FAE) kid).
    I have read Ross Greene Lost at school. My worry is that FBA is going to target actions that can be taken after disruptive or socially inappropriate behavior, rather than think about how to alter the environment so that the behavior doesn't take place.

    But realistically what is the best I can expect of school? He has been mainstreamed. Has some aide support in classes (he and a couple others share) which being 13 he is embarrassed about. I have some sympathy for him not wanting and doubt that the school would provide a 1 on 1 aide.

    There is some talk of sending him to a behavior intervention center for 45 days, but really I don't think this is a kid that would respond real well to a behavior level system. And it would expose him to kids who are more conduct disordered.

    I generally think he is doing about as well as he can do behavior wise. We live in a really small school district--alternative at this point is the self contained room which basically services severely disabled, autistic etc. Cognitively he is ok.

    I don't really know what to ask for at this point and am really depressed and worried about how to help him.
  2. smallworld

    smallworld Moderator

    How is he doing since the SSRI has been discontinued? Do you think it's gone from his system?
  3. whatamess

    whatamess New Member

    The FBA will inform the plan. The plan is the behavior intervention plan- this will list his behaviors (the triggers and functions of those behaviors) and ways in which to prevent those behaviors from happening. The other side of that plan is the crisis plan- that is what comes into effect if the preventative measures didn't work. A good FBA will pinpoint why the behaviors are happening and then come up with strategies to prevent, but more importantly SOLVE those issues. Why did he punch the other kids- that is really what needs to be discovered.
  4. susiestar

    susiestar Roll With It

    You say he is doing alright cognitively. Does he have problems like dyscalculia and dysgraphia that contribute to frustration and then behavior issues? Is there a chance that assistive technology would be helpful? I am thinking about something like an alpha smart type laptop that he can do schoolwork on. Wiz was a LOT better behaved when his frustration level was lowered by using the laptop. (School pays for this, NOT YOU.). He wasn't frustrated because he could express himself with-o enduring a lot of hand cramping and aching (he would come home and sit with ice packs on his hands some days even when he had written less than 2 pages in the entire day. His hands would just get that sore from writing. Typing was a LOT easier even before he learned to type.).

    What is the cafeteria like? Here they tend to be big open rooms that are incredibly noisy. It is far worse in the older grades than in elementary school - at the middle school the principal walks around or sits on the stage in the cafeteria with a microphone barking out orders like a drill sargent but the kids are so loud that unless he screams into the microphone (ouch) no one pays any attention to him. It is truly an awful experience for all of the kids. Wiz found a teacher who let some of the kids bring their lunches into her room rather than eating in the cafeteria. She let them talk, work on projects, blow off steam, etc... and it really helped turn him around. I was very happy with it because she was one of my favorite teachers when I was in jr high. By high school they go out to lunch, so it is different then. If your son can go somewhere to destress at lunch, or after he eats, it might really help. The library, a teacher's class with a few friends, just somewhere to give him a bit of a break. I know that I HATED HATED HATED lunch every single year until high school. Not just the food, though that was a part (I am a picky picky eater) but the noise and all those people nonstop drove me nuts.

    I hope this helps give you some ideas.
  5. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    Even higher functioning kids on the fetal alcohol spectrum need extra help in school and in life. I'm not sure if he can learn from his mistakes. Some Fetal Alcohol Effects (FAE) kids can't. It can be part of the disorder (which is organic brain damage from alcohol pre-birth). The spectrum can run from Fetal Alcohol Syndrome (FAS) and mental slowness to learning disabilities and trouble understanding right from wrong. In the latter case, the child probably needs close supervision at all times. You know your child best.

    If you don't feel this school has adequate supports for him, I suggest you look at other school districts and fight to have him send somewhere with appropriate interventions. I did that with my son because our school district is also very small with limited resources.

    Good luck! I know how frustrating all of this is.
  6. TeDo

    TeDo Guest

    I just went through something very similar with my 12 year old difficult child. The school did the FBA, I didn't agree with the "reasons" they "interpreted" for difficult child's behaviors. They put their observations in writing and tried to use those as a basis for a Behavior Intervention Plan. I vehemently disagreed with their plan and refused to allow it to be written that way. I told the SpEd teacher that if they insisted on writing it that way, I would fight it up the line until they could PROVE that their perceptions for his behavior are correct. We finally worked out a compromise as to how to handle the behaviors and things they could do to try to prevent it from happening again, I insisted that my strategies be included. Now, it is in writing that they MUST find out WHY something has happened before they are allowed to do anything. My school district is also kind of small so I know how limited the choices are. My choice for a "behavior" school is an hour away from where we live.

    Good luck. Stick up for your kid. Trust your "mommy gut". Some school districts, including mine, would rather not have to deal with anything remotely difficult. I am fighting for a 1:1 para.
  7. pepperidge

    pepperidge New Member

    Hi All,

    Smallworld, We think the SSRI is pretty much gone. There doesn't seem to be any residual mania. psychiatrist suggested small dose of Risperdal (or Seroquel) if we were worried about him hitting. So right now we have him on .25 mg Risperdal, which seems to be a little sedating. I am really reluctant to get into the atypicals with this kid since we had many issues with Abilify including weight gain but also some movement issues, uncontrollable peeing in pants etc when he was younger. He seems to have this thinking about kicking/throwing things at other boys' groins.

    He doesn't really have dyscalculia or dysgraphia. In fact he met state standards last year. We did have an assitive technology review a few years ago and they were going to give him an alphasmart but he didn't want to use it. Wanted a full easy child or nothing. We weren't ready to go that route (yet) but he will get a easy child for high school. Problem will be to keep him off the no no sites. So I don't think that is a major component.

    What seems to be going on is that he doesn't read social cues very well or can't stop himself from annoying behavior even when he gets the social cues (he has been in various social skills classes and is the star but knowing what to do vs. being able to do it in the moment is another thing).

    Principal thinks he is trying to fit in with some of the less "desirable" kids and is now moved to a bit of bullying behavior of kids with more severe issues as a way of being "cool.". This is really sad to us because he has a genuinely sweet heart and has tended to stand up for other kids who are being harrassed. I think that as he ages the gap between his social developmental age and other kids is growing and he is desperately trying to negotiate the whole13/14 year boy thing. Fetal Alcohol Effects (FAE) kids are very vulnerable to being "used" by their more sophisticated peers. This of course does not bode well for the future.

    So the FBA will take place, it will show that he is trying to gain attention from his peers in negative ways . What are they going to propose? They tend to be behaviorists, token economy type of things.
    What I think is that he needs someone with him who can stop him and process what he is doing and how it is alienating the good kids he would like to be friends with. The chances of getting that in public school are pretty slim I would think.

    Anyone have an experience for a 1:1 aide for a kid that is very aware of their surroundings? That was part of my oldest son's problem--he hated the stigma of having an aide as he got older.
  8. pepperidge

    pepperidge New Member

    Forgot to add that recess and lunch are an issue not because of the sensory overload I think but because they are unstructured time when he does stupid stuff to try to get kids to laugh etc. It is of course his favorite time of day.
  9. Allan-Matlem

    Allan-Matlem Active Member

  10. pepperidge

    pepperidge New Member

    ThaInks for the cite. I also read the book. Here's where I am having some problems and maybe you have some suggstions. difficult child is very focused on having friends and peer acceptance. The FBA will probably show that he is doing things to gain attention (now wrong attention). His lagging skills are inability to control his impulses and modify his behavior with the feedback he gets from kids. Like if he is doing something and a kid tells him to stop he doesn't stop. Eventually kids get tired of him and move on. He has been to social skills training etc and can tell what he needs to do but can't do it in the moment. Schools response right now is to modify his environment so that has no unstructured interaction with peers at all. Then they hope that that when they finish the FBA there will be some majic bullet (no doubt some behavior modification plan) that will turn this around.

    What I have trouble gleaning from Greene is how you deal with teaching impulse control and what Plan B looks like in that area.
  11. Allan-Matlem

    Allan-Matlem Active Member


    I lost my post - bad connection -
    impulse control - medication is the answer for chronic problems , give him those extra seconds to start ' thinking '
    we need to collaborate with difficult child to get his concerns on the table in a safe environment for him , that he can trust teachers etc - reward and punishment undermines trust
    skills need to be taught in the context of his concerns , not just in a top down manner . Plan B is dealing with the kids concerns , in this way we automatically use different cognitive skills in the cps process. In your ' sillines ' thread we need not only to come up with a plan on how to calm down when the silliness starts surfacing but focus on his concerns and deal with the underlying factors.

    I would try to get him a peer mentor or aide and also an older kid as a mentor
    I would try and keep away fom behavior mod , use non-judgmental self evaluation , rewards narrow the focus of thinking , we need to explore , widen the focus , also less thinking about himself , more about others