I'm a little emotional today. I think it's because my hormones seems to be a bit out of wack. I've been having acne break outs at the end of and mid parts of the cycle so it explains why I feel so weird. So I apologize in advance if I've splattered words on a digital page.
Knee is heading off to kindergarten and providentally my husband forgot to sign him in today at drop off. So after a meeting I ran over to Knee's school and signed him just in time to bump into the therapist. He gets speech therapy at head start. She said she doesn't think he needs it, but thought it was a good idea to have HB's therapist at school a head's up to see if she'd like to peek at him herself. And I'll need to register him for school soon.
HB is doing well with his school therapies. The speech therapist wrote a note in his report card saying that she's been teaching him about words having multiple meanings so he can work on his fluid reasoning skills. That's the area you recall where he is academically weakest. Usually multiple definitions comes up in later grades, but since HB is so scattered, they felt it important to work on his weak areas now. He's made tremendous progress and even pointed out today that the word "point" can refer to the action of pointing with your finger or the tip of something like the point of a pencil.
So I met with the controversial therapist about controversial therapies at home. ABA therapy or applied behavioral therapy is very controversial in the autistic community. Even HB's speech therapist warned me that from her experience with this particular group it can either be dreadful or helpful.
And I've seen the red flags. Words like "recovery" and "reparative therapy" have been thrown around like autism is the type of disability that goes away.
Autism doesn't go away. But for some children they are able to catch up and learn those developmental milestones that they are missing. Much like some children can learn to walk with physical therapy.
You may be thinking "well, why go through it if it could be harmful?" I'd like to try. I think that HB does need to learn emotional regulation techniques and self-motivation techniques. We all have to learn those basic skills. Furthermore I believe that he's capable of learning them with help. He's managed to master imaginative play and is excelling at his fluid reasoning. There's no reason for me to believe that he couldn't learn how to regulate his emotions.
But I'm not stupid and I've even warned my husband about controversial ABA therapy. If I think the therapy is being more harmful than helpful, I'm more than happy to "fire" the therapist. I will not get upset about it. I will instead continue to do what I've been doing which is to look for resources. So far this is the only one, besides school and food, which I've been given access to.
And the school doesn't help with behavioral issues. I was shocked to find out yesterday that even some of the SPED students are taken by the police for attacking teachers to "scare them a little." My husband is optimistic that the teacher or I are missing some vital piece of information here, but I'm pretty sure that taking a child with a disability to the jail violates the child's civil liberties. I realize children should not be attacking their teachers but it seems to me that as part of IDEA (federal mandate to educate children with disabilities) is to provide children with behavioral therapy if their behavior conflicts with their ability to learn in a classroom setting.
I've already told my husband that the minute the school and the police remove my child for behavioral issues related to his disability is the minute I'm hiring a lawyer and suing them in federal court for not providing for his education adequately under IDEA and violating his civil liberties. This is completely ludicrous if true.
So now you may understand just a peak of what parents are feeling right now about our education system and particularly how upset we are about the Secretary of Education review went. It's not funny. HB has a lot of potential and I feel like too many people who should be helping him are not and those that maybe shouldn't could. It's sad to have to live with the lesser of two evils.