Tuesday, December 9, 2008
So, this news is a little late in coming because I just haven't found much time to sit and really put any work into retelling this scenario. But, since I just came home to get a warmer coat while working, and all is quiet, I will take a few moments to share with my now 8 readers.
Friday I finally got to meet up with all involved in the potential transitioning of Casey over to a new class room as was recounted in an earlier post.
There was his potential new teacher, who all in all seemed optimistic and open to his being in her class. There was his old teacher who claims she adores him but seems too optimistic to get him out of her class. There was a lady who is in charge of the "Team" room where kids go for discipline and rewards (confusing I think) and who seems like, well, I'll say it, a bitch. Rounding out the group was the woman who didn't even want me to see this very program last year and gave me about 2 minutes in each classroom. She's an administrator of some kind, some muckity muck.
Oddly the meeting went smoothly. I was able to explain my concerns and worries, and they all seemed very open to working with me on these. We discussed his transition over, which everyone seemed happy about. At first, a hour or so a day was thrown out, but after light debate, it was finally agreed that it would be half a day for the next week. He would meet up with the new class in the morning and go to their room straight away and then come back to the old classroom in the afternoon. I had to giggle as the new teacher wanted the opposite, but the muckity muck changed it completely, as if to say, "I'm in charge!". Politics, I swear!
The biggest issue I had was with the discipline program they have too and how they kids track a point system all day for what they do and don't. If they keep their points, they get rewards, if they don't,well, I think they have to go to the "Team" room and hang out with the afore mentioned bitch. I won't go into why I think of her as a bitch, other than her overall demeanor, but I made it clear that I didn't want Casey in the "Team" room all the time because he isn't being set up for success. They all seemed to agree, and in all fairness, the bitch was even giving some good suggestions on things they could do in class to help him.
I felt at times that parts of this meeting had been rehearsed prior to my arrival, as if to appease me in some way. I am still in doubt as to whether they really think he can handle this or whether they just feel it's a better inclusive enviorment for him and, that way, they don't have to fiddle fart with taking him to general ed. I am a bit of a conspiracy theorist so I hopefully I'm wrong.
He was supposed to start yesterday, but his current class had a field trip scheduled for then and today and so he starts tomorrow. I have been talking it up a bit, and he has said he would like to be in the new classroom. I fear however, that when he sees what it entails, the curriculum, the lack of silly field trips, and the structure, his happy little world may be knocked upside down. Then again, he may step up to the challenge and embrace the structure, maybe more of that is what he needs. Hopefully the influence of higher functioning more verbal classmates will help too. I'm trying to be "glass-half full" person, but it's very unnatural for me, ask my husband!
I laid awake the other night thinking about the change with a pit in my tummy. This is what I wanted for him last year, and now that it might be happening, I am doubting why I wanted it in the first place. I have always been happy with him being "comfortable" and maybe a little challenged at school, but mostly, comfortable. I fear too that because he has been so comfortable for so long, a very realistic classroom setting is going to be really too hard for him to handle. I hate for him to be miserable, to be stressed, to have anxiety, as does any mom. I guess if you have a typical kid though, you can reason things out if they have a bad experience, get information from them on it. With my boy, I can't. If he's sad, he really has trouble telling us why, and if he is upset about this class it could backfire in nasty behaviour and shutting down before any sort of conversation could ensue.
BUT, back to being "glass-half full" person, this might just be the thing he needs. He may really blossom in this room, I hope so. I just want him to be happy!