Wednesday, August 18, 2010

When the Bough Breaks...

I was so full of hope after this last year. How well he did on his Kindergarten test and his preschool graduation. My meeting with the school to form a transition plan and to choose a teacher. How proactive I was! I was really getting the hang of all this. Curt is a smart boy and people were seeing that! Everything was going to be fine!

First day of school. Note from Miss M said he hit another child and didn't want to sit still during work or centers. But, there was good news, too! And a happy face in the behavior circle!

Second day. Pretty much the same note. Good things, then bad things. But, still received a happy face for behavior.

Third Day. Again, pretty much the same. But, Happy Face!

Fourth Day as I am walking him into school. The Assistant Principal is outside helping the kids come in. She introduces herself, didn't think we had met. I smiled, shook her hand. She said, "After you take Curt to his room, I'd like for you to stop by my office. I need to talk to you."

And with that, my bubble of hope burst.

We need to meet on Friday to develop a Bahavioral Intervention Plan. They would like him to qualify for additional services he now doesn't qualify for because his "label" if you will is speech. It would have to be changed to developmental delay or social delay to qualify for those additional services. Those "special" services.

The last four years, I have been pounding the pavement to get him to therapies, paying thousands for those theapies and assessments. And I worry.

But I know that if I work hard enough, this will not happen to my child.

Yet, it has.

That hard work is not going to keep me from going to the principal's office Friday for this meeting. Where they get to tell me everything he is doing wrong. Which, basically equates to everything I have done wrong. I have failed myself, and I have failed him.

Pity Party over. See ya on the flipside.


Pia said...

Nope, you haven't failed. Don't even think it. (even if I do about myself everyday ... so I get why... don't say it or believe it...)

We really should talk talk... I have info that you should know before you go to that meeting. Email me at and I will email you what you should know...


Pia said...

Also, send me a fax number if you have one.... I need to fax you some stuff....

Jennifer Knight said...

Jeana - no, you haven't failed! You have done everything you can possibly do. It is the school who doesn't understand how incredible Curt is and doesn't understand how late talkers work. I can't believe they want him to "sit still" during centers... Sammy can do that now at age 7 but in kindergarten he couldn't have.

Hugs to you and Curt! What a brave young man he is! School can be tough but it's even tougher when you don't have full use of all your language abilities.

We start school next week and they haven't done the IEP yet... though we have been begging... and we're crossing our fingers and toes and everything else and hoping for a wonderful, understanding teacher.

Will's Mom said...

Well if you're a failure than it's a failure I would strive to be.

I hope your meeting goes well this Friday and that Curt gets what he needs with the correct label attached.

Will starts K (at 4 years old - augh) in a few weeks and I'm in a bit of a panic, as odds are its going to be a rough year.

I feel your pain. Its hard to do everything you can possibly so and then feel that it still comes up short. I have faith your meeting will go better than expected. Its about time someones meeting does.

Jeanna said...

Thank you all very much for your support. I am doing better! Trying to work on getting information rather than wallowing. More productive, I hope.

Missy said...


The very LAST thing you are is a failure!

Here's what chaps me off: if Curt were at a language level with his peers, the teacher would likely write this off to a new environment - change and whatnot. It's infuriating to me that 3 days in they'd be demanding a meeting and a behavioral plan. I'd sure as heck be asking that teacher if they do a behavioral plan for all of their kids that don't adjust to new schedules immediately. What a load of $hi7. Sounds to me like he's (and you) are being picked on because he's got a language delay.

Okay, with that rant said, obviously we've all been there and understand that yes, Curt's going to need some extra support - he does in fact have a language delay/disorder. Nobody is denying that. Behavioral plan? 3 days in? If he were doing this a month from now, yes, I guess I'd consider it. But 3 days? Really?

Ugh, much love and hugs to you, hon. Will be praying for you tomorrow. DO NOT let them get to you - you have done everything you could possibly do to help that wonderful child - he's doing GREAT. He's spirited - not a thing wrong with that. He just needs gentle guidance to learn what's socially acceptable. Heck, I know 30 year old moms who don't have that skill. ;)

Love ya,


Jeanna said...

Missy, since you have actually met Curt, you know he's spirited. And, yes, I will be bringing up the fact that I don't think 3 days is really en.ugh to make an assessment.

That being said, I brought this up to the C's in March and they said, maybe he won't need one. Let them bring it up. Which is good advice , but I knew he would need it. He is not good at transitions. I (type A) would rather go in wit a plan than be ambushed in an office with three ladies vs. me. I don't feel they wanted to ambush me, but that's certainly what I felt.

I will give you an update when this is over. Tomorrow. I have my ducks in a row. He can get services under "Speech and language impaired." I will accept that. I will accept 1-2 hours out of class for one on one, because that's how he learns best.

I will agree tomorrow to the Beahvior Plan. Jodi says this was great for her child. (Same plan.) Other services, I can think about. I don't have to give them answers tomorrow. But, I will agree only under the appropriate label.

Thank you, Missy. I wish there other school options for Curt. Honestly, here, this public school is the very best. We shall just see. Love you.

Ange said...

Kindergarten's the worst year.
The first month of First Grade, also a difficult transition.

A year from now, you'll still be anxious. Three years from now, you'll shake your head reading up on what moms are still going through and think, 'Hm. Sure wish I would have believed someone if they'd told me it's all going to be just fine...better than fine...'

One thing Dr. Camarata said to me which has looped inside my head time and again..."There was always going to be a tough year, Angeline." Jack was swatting the first weeks of First Grade. On the day one of the counselors called and said to me, "He hit three children in the same day, so we're going to have to discipline him," is the same day Dr. C. told me the tough year quote. I was disraught. Thought we'd have to homeschool for sure. Thought they'd contest the diagnosis and we'd go through hell all over again.
Then his teacher called me and said, "I'm not sure he hit all the kids. They have a way of picking up on behaviors of other kids and exploiting them for attention, but when I asked Jack if he'd hit them, he said 'Yes' and apologized, so I talked to the principal and she's up for trying something out with me. We're going to have him sit with her at lunch for one day, explaining to him why he can't sit with his friends if he's going to hit them, and then we'll see how that goes?'
I was still shaken up.
"Angeline, you've got to know that every child in my classroom has a behavioral issue. It's the nature of being six. I know why Jack's swatting these kids. We're going to work on it, I promise you, because I know it's not all his fault, and I admire the way he takes responsibility for it."

He cried that entire lunch, but the principal stayed firm, and he said, "I'm so sorry," a dozen times, was so heart breaking, both women almost caved, but that was his 'detention' and they saw it through.
He has never swatted at another kid since that day, and has consistent A+s in behavior.

This issue is the last leg of this journey, my friend.
Swatting's nothing. It's forgotten about by everyone by the time the kid stands up and entertains the bored parents throughout the spelling bee.
The school has to deal with the parents of the kids getting swatted. Those parents would likely be total dicks about it --as I'm sure I would have been if Jack had talked just fine by five and came home talking about the swatting kid...
But the hell with that and what other people think...for now.

He's an absolutely normal brilliant late talking kid. It's a brief phase. The hardest, sure, but it doesn't get him an inmate tattoo. You are right on track--this is just the bumpiest part.
If this is the toll you pay for getting over to the other side, pay it! He can handle this. He can be taught not to swat, and then after takes a few years to admit it, but it's cake.

I'm telling ya, Jeanna. I've had to stop talking about my kids, because it just sounds like bragging now.

If this is still going on in three years, I'll come visit and you can kick me in the ass as many times as you want.