Author Topic: Individuals with disabilities S/O  (Read 2257 times)

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rain

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Individuals with disabilities S/O
« on: August 24, 2013, 05:03:05 PM »
Sometimes I feel the more things change the more they stay the same



When I was in Jr High we got a new student who was deaf.  Her homeschool district wouldn't provide assistance as her grades were so low.  However, if she was making high enough grades they most likely said she didn't need help  >:(.

Anyway - in my school she made good grades with assistance/an interperter/resource (& today she's a teacher  :))


thing is years later, in my hometown the school did not want to provide assistance to a student who was blind  :o >:(   They did once the little boys family informed the school that they'd learned  they could move him to a different school district & home school dist. would lose funding + have to pay & the parents could sue via "due process"... the school changed its tune


(my DM has 2 kids who know about FAPE & IDEA  >:D)


"oh we thank thee lord for the things we need, like the wind and the rain and the apple seed"

*inviteseller

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Re: Individuals with disabilities S/O
« Reply #1 on: August 24, 2013, 06:32:56 PM »
Our district is great with kids with 'visible' disabilities..downs syndrome, cerebral palsy, ect, but not so much with the 'invisible' disabilities..ie mental health issues.  I have had so many meetings from 2nd grade on over older DD's diagnosis..which started as ADHD then turned into bi polar/severe anxiety/personality disorder.  She was never ever a behavioral problem at school but she was being harrassed and bullied plus she had testing issues (it was suggested she have as many verbal tests as possible as she did very well on those) and they suggested it would be easier to home school her because IEP's could not be done for mental illness.  She did well in alternative schooling for a year, but her home district didn't want to take her back. 

Carotte

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Re: Individuals with disabilities S/O
« Reply #2 on: August 24, 2013, 07:17:55 PM »
In highscool we had one blind kid. He wasn't in my class So I have no precise idea how/what accommodation where made, I know he had a laptop and always had a friend helping him during lunch (taking his tray and all that). I'd say he was par with the rest of his class.
That was the only student with any kind of disability I've ran into in one of my class.
I know that schools have, by law, to take in every kid, but they don't always do. It's a pain and a half for families to fight for the right to have the kid in school with a personal helper in some places, then there's those that are so accustomed that the kids don't bat an eye* if a kid needs a wheelchair or doesn't do sport or have an helper or whatever.

*I should say adults, if explained the kids can always accept everyone, understand their limitations but also that the 'others' are kids just like themselves. It's good for everyone when there is some diversity, even more at a younger age when if little Suzy cannot grasp everything it won't even delay or bother the rest of the class. Because then you have 25 kids who grew up knowing that people like Suzy are no different from them, will accept them without problem, and maybe one day employ them or be employed by all the little Suzy without a second thought.
Now the adults that never meet little Suzy are most often than not those that will be ill at ease.

Piratelvr1121

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Re: Individuals with disabilities S/O
« Reply #3 on: August 24, 2013, 08:54:05 PM »
I remember having some disabled kids in our school when I was in middle and high school. One of my good friends had cerebral palsy.  She was in a wheelchair and I remember her getting PT at school.  Mentally she was quite sharp and very funny, which was why we became friends.  I think we'd gotten put near each other in a class or two and she'd made me laugh quite a bit so we took to having lunch together. 

I also remember having study hall in high school and most of the other kids in study hall had some kind of learning delay or another.  Looking back, some might have had aspergers or autism.   But I remember other kids thinking it was just a *nasty R word* class that was meant for getting the likes of us *including me* out of the way so other kids could learn.   ::)  Mind you I didn't have any diagnosed learning disability at the time but due to some difficulties that I later learned were due to ADD, my guidance counselor sure didn't have much hopes for my academic future and even discouraged me from thinking of going to college. 

I went and while I didn't finish, it wasn't because I wasn't smart enough, just very disorganized with poor study habits.
Beyond a wholesome discipline, be gentle with yourself. You are a child of the universe, no less than the trees and the stars.  You have a right to be here. Be cheerful, strive to be happy. -Desiderata

rain

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Re: Individuals with disabilities S/O
« Reply #4 on: August 24, 2013, 10:04:18 PM »
Our district is great with kids with 'visible' disabilities..downs syndrome, cerebral palsy, ect, but not so much with the 'invisible' disabilities..ie mental health issues.  I have had so many meetings from 2nd grade on over older DD's diagnosis..which started as ADHD then turned into bi polar/severe anxiety/personality disorder.  She was never ever a behavioral problem at school but she was being harrassed and bullied plus she had testing issues (it was suggested she have as many verbal tests as possible as she did very well on those) and they suggested it would be easier to home school her because IEP's could not be done for mental illness.  She did well in alternative schooling for a year, but her home district didn't want to take her back.

check into a 504 plan
"oh we thank thee lord for the things we need, like the wind and the rain and the apple seed"

Acadianna

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Re: Individuals with disabilities S/O
« Reply #5 on: August 24, 2013, 11:01:57 PM »
they suggested it would be easier to home school her because IEP's could not be done for mental illness.

I 've written many such IEP's, including accomodations, behavior plans, and behavioral goals and objectives.  It most certainly can be done.

m2kbug

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Re: Individuals with disabilities S/O
« Reply #6 on: August 24, 2013, 11:58:29 PM »
I'm not really sure what the full protocol is or how certain special needs are met.  Some special needs are going to be more unusual and less common.  The school district should accommodate special needs, but the child may need to go to a different school for that need to be met.  There is limited funding.  It might be a situation where the child cannot attend the closest, "home" school in the neighborhood, but will have to attend another school within the district.  At this other school, teachers, aides, and protocols already exist and accommodate other students with similar needs.  Everything is established.  Understand, some of these teachers and aides travel from school to school to accommodate certain special needs.  They are not necessarily in-house all the time.  Students that need every day, constant assistance may need to travel to the best location where accommodations are already in place, rather than setting up a whole new protocol for one kid at one school.  Transportation should be accommodated here, especially if the child needs to be transported outside of the "home" school.  Bus pick-up and drop-off should be front-door or daycare.

The Individualized Education Program (IEP) and 504 have already been mentioned.  Sometimes it can take some work and feels like pulling teeth, and I have heard of school resistance and parents having to pull some punches to get some needs met.  I've had to do a little wrestling and wrangling myself.  It can be a frustrating process.
« Last Edit: August 25, 2013, 04:00:55 AM by m2kbug »

andi

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Re: Individuals with disabilities S/O
« Reply #7 on: August 25, 2013, 12:12:19 AM »
they suggested it would be easier to home school her because IEP's could not be done for mental illness.

I 've written many such IEP's, including accomodations, behavior plans, and behavioral goals and objectives.  It most certainly can be done.

I have an online friend who has spent more hours than I can count writing IEPs for both her kids (now in 7th and 3rd grade). It's basically been a full time job for her to be an advocate for her kids - neither have overlapping issues. Her dedication is amazing to me - and the lack of cooperation and communication in her area blows my mind

kherbert05

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Re: Individuals with disabilities S/O
« Reply #8 on: August 25, 2013, 09:52:40 AM »
Our district is great with kids with 'visible' disabilities..downs syndrome, cerebral palsy, ect, but not so much with the 'invisible' disabilities..ie mental health issues.  I have had so many meetings from 2nd grade on over older DD's diagnosis..which started as ADHD then turned into bi polar/severe anxiety/personality disorder.  She was never ever a behavioral problem at school but she was being harrassed and bullied plus she had testing issues (it was suggested she have as many verbal tests as possible as she did very well on those) and they suggested it would be easier to home school her because IEP's could not be done for mental illness.  She did well in alternative schooling for a year, but her home district didn't want to take her back.

check into a 504 plan
POD - I love having a 504 for kids with issues like your daughter's and chronic illnesses. Gives me a game plan and helps me with documentation and communication. If the school balks start looking into advocacy groups that will provide you with an advice sometimes even a representative to go to ARDS/LEP and other meetings.
Don't Teach Them For Your Past. Teach Them For Their Future

gmatoy

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Re: Individuals with disabilities S/O
« Reply #9 on: August 25, 2013, 03:05:11 PM »
As a substitute teacher, I would love to accommodate children with IEPs; the problem is that I usually don't know about them! Parents, please ask your child's teacher(s) to share the info or at least the accommodations with their subs. (Many teacher's don't share because they are afraid of violating the child's privacy.)

camlan

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Re: Individuals with disabilities S/O
« Reply #10 on: August 25, 2013, 03:23:22 PM »
My nephew is physically disabled and is medical fragile, that is, he has a trach and severe breathing issues, has to be on an oxygen monitor when he's asleep, that sort of thing. He uses a power wheelchair. At school, he has a one on one aide. And his home nurses go to school with him as well.

His level of disability is such that even medical professionals such as doctors assume that he is also cognitively disabled. This is not the case, but it is sometimes difficult to convince them of this. He signed for a few years until he learned to talk with the trach, but the doctors didn't recognize his signs. DB and SIL had to warn doctors repeatedly that Nephew could not only hear them, he could understand exactly what they were saying and sometimes he'd get frightened or have nightmares based on what the doctors were saying.

So it isn't surprising that other people feel the same way.

Things that my brother and sister-in-law have had to deal with:

Other parents at school requesting that he be removed from their child's classroom. Many of them fear their child will "catch" whatever caused his disabilities.

He needs an air conditioner in his classroom. His body has a difficult time cooling off when it gets hot and he can pass out. Parents have complained that the classroom is too cold for their child who is wearing a sleeveless shirt and they want the temperature raised. So the teachers raise the temperature, and Nephew gets sick, and then my brother and SIL get upset. So now a note goes out to parents at the beginning of the school year, informing them that the classroom will be kept at 70 degrees all year long, and they can send a sweater or jacket to school daily with their child, or send one in to be kept in the classroom.

One of the parents who wanted Nephew out of his child's classroom kicked up such a fuss that they told him that Nephew was staying put, but they could put his child in a different classroom. No, he wanted his daughter in the air-conditioned classroom. Just move the kid in the wheelchair, thank you very much.

The way his school is built, there are a lot of blind corners where you can't see if anyone is coming. Back when he was seven, like any seven year old boy, he'd drive his chair too fast in the hallways, just like a regular kid who'd run in the halls. The school staff was afraid he'd run into someone going around a corner. Their solution was to put him in his manual chair at school--the chair he could not move by himself, thereby taking away all his independence. While my brother and SIL agreed the speeding the hallways was an issue, they proposed other ways of dealing with it--setting a speed limit on the chair at school, and a standard behavior improvement program to stop the speeding in the halls. (Nephew never did hit anyone with the chair.)

There is an on-going issue with the school over adaptive equipment. Because Nephew is fully mainstreamed, his teachers know very little about what adaptive equipment the school has. The Special Ed teachers, who know all about it, have little to no contact with Nephew. So weeks can go by as notes are sent to and from school, until Nephew gets the adaptive ruler that will allow him to do the math problems that require measuring lines. No one seems to be able to figure out how to solve this problem. My brother's request for a list of every single piece of adaptive equipment in the school has gone unanswered.
Nothing is impossible, the word itself says, “I’m possible!” –Audrey Hepburn


Acadianna

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Re: Individuals with disabilities S/O
« Reply #11 on: August 25, 2013, 06:51:15 PM »
There is an on-going issue with the school over adaptive equipment.

Have his parents contacted the school district?  There should be someone in special ed at that level who is responsible for assistive technology and who can advise the parents about what's available and useful for nephew.  If he has difficulties with fine motor skills, there are many possibilities.

I was surprised to hear he has "little to no contact" with a special ed teacher.  It sounds like he needs a sped teacher at his school who is assigned to ensure that his IEP is implemented appropriately.  (My own school uses a "case manager" system, in which every student in sped has a sped teacher assigned to him or her.)

Best of luck to nephew and his family!

camlan

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Re: Individuals with disabilities S/O
« Reply #12 on: August 25, 2013, 07:04:11 PM »
There is an on-going issue with the school over adaptive equipment.

Have his parents contacted the school district?  There should be someone in special ed at that level who is responsible for assistive technology and who can advise the parents about what's available and useful for nephew.  If he has difficulties with fine motor skills, there are many possibilities.

I was surprised to hear he has "little to no contact" with a special ed teacher.  It sounds like he needs a sped teacher at his school who is assigned to ensure that his IEP is implemented appropriately.  (My own school uses a "case manager" system, in which every student in sped has a sped teacher assigned to him or her.)

Best of luck to nephew and his family!

He's got a case manager. And DB and SIL have contacted the school and the school administration many, many times.

In terms of the over-all picture, the school system is doing a great job. Nephew is completely mainstreamed, and they have done a great job working with the other kids to make sure Nephew is included in activities.

It is the little day-to-day things, like the ruler, that seem to fall through the cracks. It is apparently no one's job to look at the lesson plans for the week ahead and think, "Oh, rulers. Can Nephew use a standard ruler? If he can't, what are the options?"

Once my brother has identified the need, the school is more than willing to fill the need. The problem is that it can take a week or more to sort out, and by then, the measuring unit is over and the class has moved on to something else.

The one thing the school could do that they  haven't yet, is to hire a specially trained one on one aide, who has been through state-run training on dealing with physically handicapped students. If things don't improve this year, DB and SIL are going to insist on this. But Nephew is moving up to the middle school this year, so they are waiting to see how things go there.

The school system has admitted that they've never had a student with this level of physical disability who didn't have some level of cognitive disability. So students with similar handicaps have previously been in Sped classrooms. They admit they are sort of figuring things out as they go along, to some degree.

He really should be in a 504 program, I think, but the school system wants him in Special Ed.

And the key thing is that these issues are happening with a school and teachers who are totally on-board with mainstreaming my nephew. I shudder to think what other families have to go through, when the school system isn't in agreement with the family's goals.
Nothing is impossible, the word itself says, “I’m possible!” –Audrey Hepburn


Jones

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Re: Individuals with disabilities S/O
« Reply #13 on: August 25, 2013, 07:37:24 PM »
I have mentioned on this board that I have several adopted siblings. Two of my younger sisters have mental disabilities. My parents moved to an area with a high school a quarter the size of the one I graduated from, because they talked to representatives and liked the program (plus my dad has to work in that area a couple times a week anyhow, he has a wide area he oversees). Not that my school is bad, I attended with a variety of students of different abilities; physical and mental. My parents just felt that this other school had a better program for their needs.

One sister is a senior this year, and is so streamlined at this point that she is an active participant on the drill team, and gets the grades to support doing that--the minimum is 2.5 GPA I believe. It's been a tough road for her but everyone supported her and she's flourished. She is actually looking at continuing school and becoming a dance teacher!

The other sister will probably have to be in group homes once she leaves my parent's house, but the things she's learned to date are incredible. She can cook basic foods, reading (!!) package directions. She can now write in cursive. She still has difficulty conversing, and understanding what is appropriate discussion, but she interacts with people in public and manages to get her thoughts across to people most of the time. She wears dresses and uses the best manners as she believes she is now a princess.

It breaks my heart that she came from a Russian sanatorium, where it was believed she would never be able to speak or do anything useful to take care of herself. She was one of the babies who is raised with very little human interaction and would normally have a difficult time feeling empathy. She does though, feel empathy I mean. I know few people with as big a heart as she has. She may have a quiet life ahead of her, but I am very grateful that she has the chance to have a family, and will be able to make friendships and experience life. Living in a sanatorium (or one of those old-fashioned psychiatric hospitals) forever is not something I wish on anyone.

Elisabunny

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Re: Individuals with disabilities S/O
« Reply #14 on: August 25, 2013, 08:37:22 PM »
Camlan, the air conditioning for your nephew seems like it might be unmanageable once he gets into middle school.  I know there are cooling vests- my neighbor has one for her MS.  Would that work for him?

I'm lucky to live in a district that seems to try very hard to accommodate special needs.  One thing they have that I really like is a preschool for kids with IEPs or 504s, which is also open to "normal" children.  When they move up to Kindergarten, the special needs kids almost always have at least one classmate who already is comfortable with them.
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