School Review

To whom it may concern ~ A Message from a Parent of a Special Needs Child (author unknown)

Remember that he is, first of all, my child.
Let me see him smiling in his sleep and let me think about how handsome he is...
and not about how delayed that smile was in coming.
Help me not lose sight of my son in the shadow of his limitations...
I know that you care for my child and that you work hard with him.
I need your expertise to help him become all that he is capable of being.
You need my help in understanding who he really is and in following through at home with things that are important.
Remember, though, that you send him home at night and have weekends off and paid vacations.
Let me have the luxury of having a vacation, sometimes physically,
sometimes just emotionally, for a day, a week, a month, without your judging me.
I will be there for him when you are long gone.
I love my child with an intensity that you can only imagine.
If on a given day I am tired or cross with him, listen to me, lighten my burden, but do not judge me.
Celebrate with me, rejoice in who he is and who he will become...
but forgive me if from time to time I shed a tear for who he might have been.

After approximately 30 school days I met with Ryan's team at his school and our school districts service coordinator to review his goals. Present were his teacher, his PT, OT and ST, the school social worker, school nurse, me and the service coordinator from my county. It was generally informal, everyone spoke a little about what they were doing with Ryan and if they were having any problems and his revised goals. I think the major concern I had with everyone was to push him more, my little fella is quite ok with taking the easy route and he can fool you very easily into thinking he cant do something, especially when it comes to PT. I was happy though that his teacher seems to recognise that Ryan has an understanding of alot more than he is sometimes given credit for and she mentioned he loves learning numbers (wonder who he got that from? :) ) and thrives with being challenged cognitively. It was so nice to hear these words, to hear an educator recognise the ability's in Ryan that I have known for some time in my heart. Hes a smart little boy, we just have to find a way to tap into his brain in the right manner to help him learn and understand. I spent abuout 45mins in the classroom during circle time and I was very impressed with his teachers patience and genuine love for her kids.

“All that's valuable in society depends upon the opportunity for development accorded the individual.” -- Albert Einstein

Before the meeting I met with one of Ryan's speech therapists. I wanted to see what was going on in these sessions and how the "switch" and computer time was working for Ryan. I also wanted to make sure that he is being challenged to respond verbally and with the signs he knows, as well as the switch. It was definitely a worthwhile meeting as Ryan was taking advantage of her a little, sitting back letting her do alot of the work. Eg when she brought Mr potato head out she was giving Ryan the pieces and helping him put them in, I let her know that if you put the pieces on the table and ask Ryan to pick up the "eyes" he can do that with every piece. I think her eyes were opened a little as to what my boy can do. (shes seems quite young and inexperienced but hungry to learn. Luckily his other 2 ST sessions a week are with the schools head of speech department. I didn't hear alot of verbalisation's in the session and Ryan wasn't as engaged as he was with Suzanne , his EI therapist so I still have some concerns and will probably need to look into private speech therapy to supplement. Always something more to do ....... but the first time I hear him say mummy it will be all worth it.


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