Friday, 26 October 2012

Taking Steps for Jack

I got a chance to really talk to Jack's teacher yesterday afternoon which was extremely helpful and encouraging.  I am very impressed by her take charge attitude and unwillingness to accept the party line.  Reminds me of someone else I know :).  She has been a teacher for many years, Jack's pre-K teacher from last year used to work with her at a different school.  I am starting to think that she may have facilitated his placement in her classroom.  Anyway, Jack came back in from recess and continued to cry and need the headphones.  He was convinced that the red light on the smoke detector in the classroom was really an indication that it was about to go off, no one was able to convince him otherwise.  I really hope we don't have a recurrence today, but he seems like he is in a pretty good place this morning, didn't wake up last night, etc. 

As much as I hate that Jack went through this, and frankly that his teacher went through this, it was probably a good thing for his long term services at school.  Jack is such a great kid that until you actually witness his extreme behaviors, it's difficult to believe they exist.  Well now they know (and knowing is half the battle- sorry GI Joe moment there).  I asked his teacher how the observation with the school psychologist went and she said it was useless, as Jack was fascinated by what they were doing at the time and sat still and paid attention.  Typical.  Then she said that she didn't want to get my hopes up, but she has contacted the school board resource person to come observe Jack in class.  She is apparently a person with the power to allocate more resources to Jack.  So once again, the teacher is being very proactive.  She did go on to explain to me that the issue is that Jack does not have behavioral problems. Trisha- you hit the nail on the head in your comment on facebook about my post yesterday.  He is not "dangerous", he is not disruptive to other students, other than interrupting during stories with comments, etc.  Unfortunately the resources always go to the child that could be a danger to himself or others first- and that's appropriate.  The problem is that with limited resources, where does that leave the kids that need help for developmental issues?  Screwed basically.  She suggested that if this person does not make the decision that more services are required, I need to call an "emergency" IEP meeting.  A parent has the right to do this at any time.  And I am prepared to do that at this point.  This brings me back to my second or third post ever, where I was questioning the need for an "advocate" in IEP meetings.  Eating. my. words.  I get it now.  It's not a matter of me not wanting to go to bat for Jack- I of course will be there every step of the way, but how aware am I of the resources that are even available?  How do I even know what to request?  There are some informal resources that I will probably consult first, but if it becomes necessary, I am also willing to take this step.  Sigh

The next call I made yesterday (yes it was a busy day) was to Jack's private OT.  I wanted to make her aware of the problems Jack is having, pick her brain, and see if she would be willing to work with Jack's school OT.  She was very willing to do that- I just have to sign a release at our next appointment.  She is even willing to go observe him in the classroom if it becomes necessary.  School OT's are not really in the classroom to deal with the sensory issues that Jack has.  They are there to deal with the fine motor issues that prevent him, and other children from completing their schoolwork.  So his private OT may be able to assist with some strategies to make the classroom a more suitable learning environment for Jack.  She is also putting together a list of potential interventions that we will go through at his appointment tomorrow.  On this journey, we have been blessed to connect with some really really amazing practitioners.  She, and Jack's teacher are definitely among them.

So I am feeling a little calmer, a little more "in control" than I was yesterday.  Plans are good.  Interventions are good.  Keep the positive thoughts coming- your support is invaluable to me.

1 comment:

  1. I don't mind being your "poor man/woman's OT", too. From what you mentioned, though, it sounds like the two OT's you have are doing a great job!