Thursday, December 6, 2007


Just a little bit of a newsy, here-and-there, too-stressed-and-busy-to-craft-a-real-entry N-related entry:

The assessment is ON. The occupational therapist visited his class on Tuesday, and spoke with me afterwards, going on and on about how cute N was and how friendly. (I told her that there's friendly, and then there's flirting, and he falls squarely in the latter category, especially with women. I was going to say young women, but the truth is that he told me he wanted to marry the speech pathologist after we visited her, and I'd put her in her mid-to-late 50s, which isn't really young, especially when you're not-yet seven. Actually, what he said was, "I wanna marry that blue girl [she wore a blue shirt the day of the assessment] when I'm old, after I have my firefighter wife.") I'm worried, though, because it didn't sound like the OT 'saw' much. However, his teacher made a point of giving her an article on sensory processing disorder from this week's Time (something she found on her own, and which she gave me a copy of as well), saying that it really sounded like N to her. I like that. A lot. She's obviously thinking about him. Plus, it makes it clear that SHE is seeing stuff too, and it's not just old Munchausen-by-proxy me. (Kidding. Really. But sometimes I get the feeling that the district sees me that way...)

Today, while I was working in the classroom, the 'team leader'/school psychologist (but not the Idiot School Psychologist), another young woman, came in to observe him. N came running up to me and said, in a stage whisper, "Is this another girl who's going to talk to me?" (We've been letting him know more or less what's going on--that there are people who will be talking with him and playing with him and trying to figure out the best way to help him do even better in school--so he doesn't feel like a monkey in cage and get confused and anxious.) When I nodded yes, he pumped a fist in the air, and said, "Yipppeeee!" He is just loving having the ladies spend time with him. There is nothing this kid loves more than undivided attention from adults.

And tomorrow begins the testing that will be done by the 'resource specialist' at the school--the woman who does one-on-one reading/math/whatever for kids who need a little extra. I'm not sure he's going to qualify, but I did make a point of telling her to take a look at his test scores from the end of this trimester; the reading test they give on the computers in the computer lab put N as BY FAR the lowest in his class, at a grade equivalent of second month of KINDERGARTEN. You know, when they are STILL LEARNING THE ALPHABET. That is not N. N is possibly not yet reading at grade level, but he's definitely reading. I'd buy late kindergarten. But pre-primer? Nope. So I want someone to help me figure out why that is. (My guess: Test anxiety. Which he would come by honestly, since I totally had it. But also, there's the whole "he kicks butt on math and spelling tests" thing, so I think there's also more than a bit of language disorder in there, too. It seems that the problem lies almost exclusively in any testing that involves whole sentences, especially--at this point at least--fill-in-the-blanks tests. He doesn't do well on those at all.)

The speech therapist has yet to do her thing, and the OT wants to come back and focus more on fine motor stuff, since she didn't get to see enough of that, and I don't know how many days the resource specialist is supposed to take him (she said it would be over "several" days, which is fine, since she's on-site and can just take him for half an hour here and there) and I don't know if the psych will be back one more time or more than one more time...But there's a lot of activity going on. Which I thought would make me feel calmer, but it's just worrying me. Because he's doing really WELL right now, the little bastard. (Just kidding! Love him! To pieces!) So I'm figuring they're all going to wonder why I'm so freaked out, and then they'll laugh me out of the IEP, and then, right around February when it's all over, he'll just fall apart again.

Yep, that glass is DEFinitely half empty.


Maddy said...

It takes a great deal of strength to get through all the evaluations which seem to take forever. I'm sure you'll get there in the end.
Best wishes
This is my calling card or link"Whittereronautism"until blogger comments get themselves sorted out.

Green said...

This shit is crazy. So much different testing by so many different people. At least its all women so far, so your budding polygamist is having fun with it.

One thing I remember that drove my mother nuts was that if people saw problems with me that weren't their area, they didn't raise them or address them. So when I pronounced Jose as Josie in special math in elementary school, the math teacher let it slide, instead of saying "Hey, this girl doesn't read, she just guesses!"

Hope they find wrong with him everything that is, so they can fix him up perfectly!

po said...

They have other sources of information in addition to their personal observations: your reports and those of the teachers. They know (or at least they OUGHT to know) that kids perform differently in testing than they do in everyday life, a lot of the time.

Though your fears are not completely groundless. At the end of every year, at our IEP meeting, Matthew would be doing so great, so they never increased his services. Then he would, indeed, fall apart again the next year.

But for an initial eval., I would hope that they would take into account his patterns of behavior up to now, not just how he's doing better recently.