Wednesday, March 7, 2012

The Boy

We had an IEP meeting for Brendan yesterday, which turned into fun with joking, stories, and laughter.  What a nice change from some we've had.  Our little guy is making progress and has a way to go.  We believe he'll do pretty well once we get him through school.  I love the school he's in now and the village that works with him.  They are awesome!  It's a public elementary school he attends out of zone because it has a CBIP class for autistic students.  He's been diagnosed with Asperger's and possibly some other neurological disorders.  He doesn't spend as much time there as he does in his special ed and general ed classes now but checks in and is monitored there, too.  He did at first though.  With one more year there after this one for him, we're all concerned about middle school.  It's bad enough there for any students but could be disastrous for him.  They accommodate him as much as possible to keep him on task and teach skills that help him learn.  No way some of this will happen at middle school and high school.  

Some of you who teach understand how this is and some who struggled with school for various reasons will, too.  It's a challenge.  I'm so proud of Brian and Melissa.  Brendan is an entertaining child and extremely interactive and talkative with limited impulse control.  This is teacher talk for a handful!  LOL


froggy said...

When we were trying to re-introduce J (anxiety disorder) into school we decided to give him two months (end of the year) into his next grade which was middle school. (Got him away from the very bad situation in his elementary school). They added us to a class for AS kids. We stayed for the first lesson, a social lesson, of the morning. The social lessons were very specific and the kids participated. Really interesting to see their thoughts and reactions. We spent the rest of our morning in a conference room off the office and slowly added in a math and social studies class.

I know they have an adjustment week before school begins for other fragile kids. Kids get the additional time to learn the building, meet teachers, figure out the cafeteria, the gym and other specialized classrooms.

My friend works in a similar classroom where the kids can come and go attempting to try general ed. Problem there is they have AS kids mixed up with kids who are on a hair trigger and occasionally violent.

I found this in general sped too. Dyslexic GB in class with kids who had behavioral and anger management problems. I removed him from the program for that year.

I have strong opinions about this - can you tell??

froggy said...

PS - glad you had a good meeting. Good parents (and grandparents) make ALL the difference!!!

Kailyn said...

Glad to hear you had a good meeting.

My first year teaching middle school was at a school that was piloting a full inclusion program for students with Asperger's. And yes, I was one of the two teachers who had one of the students in my core classes. Made me a better teacher since the accommodations I had to make for him worked with so many other students.

Joy said...

Yes, Froggy, so do I! That classroom was so wrong for GB. It's hard to get them in the best place for them. There is a KIPP Academy that was suggested. I'd never heard of before but what I read sounds promising. Do you know about them?

Wow, Kailyn, you started out teaching middle school! Glad that experience was helpful for you. It made me more understanding when I had various sp ed students in class.

Kailyn said...

I am one of those rare people who enjoys that age of student so yes, I asked for middle school.

KIPP started in Houston if I'm not mistaken. I have had friends who have worked at KIPP campuses out here and they loved it. Longer school day. Commitment to parent involvement.

Sam said...

Well. I'm so happy for you and Brendan. That boy Is something!! He is so lucky to have parents and grandparents that understand not everything is solved by pill or a belt. Are you writing this down? Lol. Yes when Bill and I talk about Brendan we can do nothing but laugh and smile. He is a handful and aren't you blessed.

Sam said...


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Miss Ginger Grant said...

I didn't realize your little buddy has Aspergers... I have an adult friend whom I think suffers from it, long undiagnosed. I'm not even sure it had been identified when we were kids. Hopefully with the right village, as you called it, of teachers, and his wonderful, loving family, he'll find his way to cope, exceed, and prosper. I don't know tons about it, but I have read that it's all about finding the right "path"! Good luck to you all- meanwhile: enjoy your handful! They grow up so fast!

Kailyn is right... KIPP did start here in Houston. I hear wonderful things about it, and it requires strict parent involvement, so you don't have all those kids there whose parents just send them to school for free babysitting. Our Partners in Time program at work has donated lots of time at the school helping them paint, landscape, redecorate classrooms, etc. I would definitely explore what they have to offer!!

Miss Ginger Grant said...

Who is Michelle? Did you get spammed or am I missing something?

Joy said...

I got spammed. Isn't that weird?

Bucko (a.k.a., Ken) said...

It takes a community sometimes, and you are definitely a big part of it!