Step Five

AND NOW WE DRINK. I must say, Ike's final IEP was worth the wait. The thrills! The chills! The supports and services! Almost 50 pages of red-hot reading/writing/spelling goals! We've got small group and one-to-one pull-outs! We've got handwriting and speech therapy hours! We've got testing accommodations and human scribes (?) and preferential seating! We even got summer school and the promise of placement in a hand-picked immersion classroom next year with full-time special education support. And another meeting in 60 days just to make sure we don't need to add another 10 pages or so. And another meeting 90 days after that because...I forget why, exactly. Maybe they just think I'm fun. (I did leave the house and then realize I was wearing a t-shirt with a marijuana joke on it, so that's actually kind of possible.) Basically, if the district offers it, Ike's getting it, effective immediately. I'm so relieved I could go lie down for seven hours, and not even from the bourbon. A Portrait of the Reader as a Young Man Read more →


A Brief Description of the IEP Meeting Process

Step One: You tell your kid's school that Hey, Something Ain't Right. Step Two: 30 days later, you attend an initial meeting to officially voice your concerns that Hey, Something Ain't Right.* A variety of tests and assessments by a variety of people are planned to confirm that Something Ain't Right. *Bonus points if you come prepared to this meeting with a pricey independent assessment that already confirms the Something, and by "bonus points" I mean hahahahahaha absolutely nothing you just played yourself, son. Step Three: 90 days after that, you attend ANOTHER meeting to go over the results of the tests and assessments, and SURPRISE: Something Ain't Right. Step Four: You wait ANOTHER 30 days for ANOTHER meeting, at which point a plan actually gets put in place to address the Something, and services and accommodations can officially begin for the Something. Step Five: Drink! So we had an IEP meeting yesterday for Ike, a meeting of the Step Three variety. The earliest he'll get help from the school is now mid-to-late January. I'm more frustrated than usual with this particular rodeo round because I've been sounding the Step One alarm since PRESCHOOL. Then all through Kindergarten. By first... Read more →


Yes Ike Can

This week, Ike sat down and wrote out his Christmas wish list. AND I COULD READ IT. It wasn't perfect, but it was a far cry from past writing efforts that I couldn't make heads or tails of, and would even stump him when he tried to remember what he meant by words like LOUUOB or WOEABL. (Those were "LOVE" and "WORLD." Of course.) Ike loves loves LOVES his reading program. I'm pretty pleased with it as well, because...look at that! "Dimensions??" Are you kidding me? (He's asking for a Bumblebee, Pokemon cards, a new Lego Dimensions disc because ours got scratched and doesn't work anymore, and Minecraft Story Mode Season 2. Ezra's list asks for a computer, a diary WITH A LOCK, and "12 pairs of pants.") Meanwhile, his school STILL has not completed the assessments or made any changes to his IEP. His general education teacher is doing what she can, but it looks like official supports and services won't happen until next semester. So I'm very glad we're making progress on our own. We went with a newer program called SpellRead, which claims to be able to essentially rewire a dyslexic brain to process language and text... Read more →