28 June 2009

Mixed Feelings

I don't like the concept of "Special Education". Is it really special? Anyways, I'm trusting all these people in the room trying to sell us on special class for Rejeanne are going to prove themselves out in the end. I'm not really sure she should be in special ed. Sure, she doesn't talk much and tends to ball up in the corner when she's had enough, but regular preschool snapped Crimson right out of all her problems in 3 weeks. Couldn't the same thing happen for Rejeanne? It's not like they have any kind of concrete diagnosis for the kid. The best I can get is she has "more than one developmental delay" in the same paragraph as "she can do things at a 4 and 5 year old level in some areas". What am I supposed to do with that exactly?

Anyways, I was wearing a pink shirt again today. Rejeanne was standing next to me and I accidently bumped her. I said "I'm sorry, Rejie" and she responded "I sorry, Patrick" *sigh* I really need to convince her that I am not Patrick.


~liz Wessel said...

One thought I have is consider a trial basis for either program. Yet, I think if it were me I might lean towards the specialized program initially as a stepping stone to immersing her in the regular class. I think being around other children will be good for Rejie. It seems to me a pro with the special education is that she will get individualized attention that might help her catch up in whatever area she might need assistance.
You could start in the regular program but if she struggles and then you place her in the special ed it may feel more like a set back rather than a gain. Just my thoughts.

Anne Basso said...

My best advice is to go for the Special Ed. They are there because they love helping kids get to where they need to be.

I know you said on my blog that much of what Rejeanne does sounds like Ciaran. And you have to remember that things like developmental delays do not equal stupid. Very bright kids have developmental delays.

Think of it this way: I don't know about you, but I had a really hard time learning proper social skills as a kid. These classes will help Rejeanne develop those skills she needs so that she can go into school better prepared to deal with those situations.

It's not about labeling them, it's about getting them what they need to be successful. And what wouldn't you do to see your kids succeed?


~liz said...

Sounds like wise council to me!

Claire Wessel said...

I am bothered by the fact that she's now got a label in the school district at not-quite-three. I did sign the stuff for special ed just because they have less kids, more aides and probably more awareness as to the difference in frustration versus "behavior problem". I also found out today that a gal at my church is an aide for the special ed preschool so at least Rejeanne will also have a familiar face. Lee and I figured that since they do progress reports every 9 weeks that if we feel some changes need to be made, we can still do that.

Anne, why do we think so much alike? It's starting to be a little borg-ish. :)

I think most of my problems with special ed is more just the sadness when I see my friends (slightly younger for the most part) children progressing to where they have caught up to Rejeanne and then passed her by. She's getting old enough that people are starting to notice her speech problems and I wonder if they think she's stupid. I feel like saying "She can't talk much, but she's smart enough to get by without it!" grrr. I know having delays doesn't equal stupid, but do other people really know that? Then I sit here wondering why it bothers me that people might think my kid is stupid. I also wonder why I keep feeling like I've failed her some how. I've taught her lots of stuff even though I don't know if she's learning it or not. I used to think I was just going through the motions but she wasn't learning, but then she spontaneously started counting stairs. She got to 10 on her first try and she goes to 12 sometimes now, but only if she thinks you aren't paying attention! So, clearly all that counting I did with her was learned afterall. It is just really hard to see the other younger kids passing her by. I know a few of my friends with autistic children must have experienced the same thing, but none have ever said so outloud in my direction anyways. I wonder if they feel alone and helpless in raising their children too sometimes. I think I'm just in IEP funk right now. Most of the time, I just delight in her craftiness :)