AUTISM SUPPORT NETWORK/AUTISM SOCIETY YORK REGION NEWSLETTER
THE BACK-TO-SCHOOL ISSUE
August 24, 2001
Mainstreaming in Classrooms
(The following is meant for children to read. Given the subject matter, it could be a useful tool to present to your ASD child's teacher, so that she can pass it out to all the NT kids in the class)
The world is made up of many different kinds of people. There are people with different skin colors, different religions, different hairstyles, different accents, and different learning abilities (just to name a few!). Yet, despite all their differences, people somehow manage to work together successfully. That's what makes the world go 'round!
Learning to get along with all different kinds of people is one of the keys to being successful in life. School helps you do this. Mainstreaming and inclusion in classrooms allows you to work with and get to know all different types of kids. Read our article to understand how learning with others helps everyone.
What Is Mainstreaming?Mainstreaming is an educational method that says a classroom should include many different kinds of learners. The term "mainstreaming" was first used in the 1970s and describes the education of students with disabilities with those who do not have disabilities. In a mainstreamed classroom, all kids, including gifted kids and children with disabilities, learn together in the same classroom. Mainstreaming is now more commonly known as inclusion, and many school systems today are using inclusion in their districts. Is your school mainstreamed?
To finish the article, click here.
First Meetings with schools.......
1. One very short outline (approximately one page) on each child covering the most important Past and Present Issues/goals/Concerns. On this I list in point form (as much as possible) those areas of greatest importance. The reason I do this is because hitting the school with a huge quantity of information can cause what is most important to become lost in the information.... Point form is great because they can put it on the top of the file, pull it out, check it and move down the list quickly.....
In my experience it is best to give more detailed information after I have gotten to know the school and the teachers involved with my children. There are two reasons for this:
1. after I've built a positive relationship with the teacher/school official they are far more likely to carefully read the information that I send.....
2. it gives me time to understand their personality, their teaching style, past knowledge dealing with special needs children, and their relationship with my child..... all important elements in determining what information the teacher needs access to and what directions to start encouraging the teacher to move in. It is my rock solid belief that IPP plans need to be individualized to suit not just the child but the individual teacher's style who is teaching my child that year. In my experience this has led to the greatest degree of success for my children.....
3. Plus it is extremely important to discover what knowledge they already possess. One because no one likes it when you assume they as professionals do not have certain knowledge.... and two because if they do have knowledge it usually works best if you lead them towards what you want and let them think it is their own idea. They want to feel proud for being educational professionals and being able to come up with helpful ideas.... Everybody is like that actually I believe - part of regular human nature.
The most important point that I try to keep solidly in mind is it is not important to be right.... what's important is to get my child's needs met. Sometimes that takes more time and a great deal of energy put into relationship building..... but the results are better in the long-run.....
" Back to School, 2001"
As September approaches, parents are switching their focus from summer programming to thoughts of the coming school year---- " The Happ- Happiest Time of the Year" according to the Business Depot commercial!!!!!! But for parents of exceptional students, this school year often raises doubts and anxiety about programming and services; about suspensions and expulsions; about funding and cutbacks; about attitudes and frustrations.........
teachers help youth come out of shell
JOHNSON, Courier & Press staff writer
Thousands of local students will be heading back to school in less than
one month. I know because my son, who will be in the first grade, has
already started to prepare.
I wrote about him in this column last year explaining how
he cried when he had to leave Fairlawn Elementary School on what he
thought was to be his first day. (Kindergartners didn’t have to report
the first three days.)
I’m proud to report Kyle, who has autistic tendencies,
excelled in school beyond my, and his teachers, wildest dreams. To read the rest of this article, click here. ________________________________________________________________________________________ How
to Prepare For School Prepare for a New
Time Required: 6
I wrote about him in this column last year explaining how he cried when he had to leave Fairlawn Elementary School on what he thought was to be his first day. (Kindergartners didn’t have to report the first three days.)
I’m proud to report Kyle, who has autistic tendencies, excelled in school beyond my, and his teachers, wildest dreams.
To read the rest of this article, click here.
to Prepare For School
Prepare for a New School Year
Time Required: 6 hours
Back-to-School Hints from REAL Parents
by BBB Autism members Khris, Becca, Liz, Gabrielle,
For Your Child
A has a home
ABA program, and we have been able to get permission to go into the
school this summer. We just live down the street from the school. So
every day, the therapists are walking Alex down to school, spending time
in his classroom etc. He will still have to adjust to all the people in
September, but we feel this is an excellent start for him.
He uses a
picture activity schedule book, for his walk (to the school), so he is
independently able to see what he has to do next. Hang up backpack etc.
I use simple
repetitive language to get J. ready for the bus. I use phrases like
"Where's the bus" and "Here's the bus".
our son and are already doing most of what we will be doing come
September (minus a few curriculum books and hopefully a weekly class).
child to the school during the summer months. Getting them used to the
building and encouraging play on the playground. This helps your child
feel more comfortable.
Find the walk
route (if your are walking) and get your child used to walking the route
during the summer months.
child to their new teacher ahead of time
"drive-by" and playground visit to the new school.
boys are going to be in 2nd and 4th grade. We do meet the teacher and I
always give a little "talk" with the teacher about the sensory
issues. Public school has always been tough - long day, lots of sensory
stuff. I tell them to let the boys sit on the outsides of the group, the
back in line, they don't like field trips, to sit them away from windows
and vents and things like this. Our biggest thing at the moment is
lunchtime. Our boys were on the GFCF diet last year for awhile until we
switched to using Peptizyde for the dairy/gluten foods. Peptizyde is a
digestive enzyme and is therefore classified as a food, BUT the school
nurse wants a doctor's note (won't take my permission). They are not
supposed to take ANYTHING unless the nurse gives it to them and she
wants a note. The boys take their lunch a few days a week and I put the
enzymes in their lunchbox, but at our school the hot lunch kids sit
separately from the cold lunch kids. My kids want to sit with their
friends sometimes. So I now (after haggling with our dr) can get a note
saying they need these, however to go to the nurse's office they have to
get out of the lunch line (you have to sit in the same order as you are
in the lunch line). An odd thing to be dealing with at the moment. It
would be a lot more hassle to require the school to provide a GFCF lunch
everyday and I am going to point that out and ask them to come up with
For The School,
Teachers, Aides, etc.
Packets - outlining your child's strengths and weakness, particular
idiosyncrasies, and strategies that he/she responds to. One for each
person involved with your child.
meeting with school officials as a ‘get to know each other’ meeting.
This is a time for making friends rather than driving home points.
Making friends first provides a foundation upon which it becomes easier
to get your child's needs met. Its really good if you can target one
person to bond with who can act as a spokesperson for your child.
the new school to be like your old or even have the same challenges. Find out what the challenges are that
this particular school faces and find out what motivates each of the
people working with your child. Why they went into the profession, what
challenges they have faced and what has caused them the most
disillusionment. Understanding others is the first step upon which hubby
and I base a relationship that enables others to want to achieve the
most for our special needs children.
Introduction Letter to the Teacher
Read the rest of the article here.
GENERAL SCHOOL ARTICLES
(Written for Kids)
(Written for Parents)
Special Education Resources (condensed into a table)
IEP: Individualized Education Program
(note: We will devote an entire issue to IEPs in the very near future)
Q: What is an individualized education program (IEP)?
A: An individualized education program (IEP) is a written statement of the educational program designed to meet your child's special needs. The program should include statements of your child's strengths as well as weaknesses and should describe the instructional program developed specifically for your child. The IEP has two purposes: 1) to establish the learning goals for your child; and 2) to state the services that the school district is required to provide. The law requires that every child receiving special-education services have an IEP, and states that their parents have the right to receive their own copy of this document. It is important that you keep a copy of your child's IEP in order to check on your child's progress and treatment.
Q: Who develops my child's IEP?
A: According to the law, the participants present at the IEP meeting should include the following:
• Your child's teacher (s). (If your child has more than one teacher, your state may specify in the law which teacher should participate).
• A representative of the public agency other than your child's teacher.
• You, the parent -- one or both.
• Your child, when appropriate.
• Other individuals that might make the discussion more helpful, at your discretion or at the discretion of the child's school.
Q: What is included in an IEP?
A: According to the law, an IEP must include the following statements regarding your child:
• His present level of educational performance, which could include comments on academic achievement, social adaptation, prejob and job skills, sensory and motor skills, self-help skills, speech and language skills, a transition plan (for those students age 14 1/2 or older) based on the documented evaluations.
• Specific special education and related services to be provided and who will provide them.
• Projected dates for the initiation and duration of special services.
• Percentage of the school day in which your child will participate in regular education programs.
• Short-term instructional objectives (individual steps that make up the goals).
• Annual goals.
• Appropriate objective criteria and evaluation procedures to be used to measure your child's progress toward these goals on at least an annual basis.
Q: Is it the school's responsibility to ensure that my child reaches all the goals in his IEP?
A: No. The IEP is a guideline or individualized instruction, not a contract. The school is responsible only for providing the instructional services described in an IEP.
Q: What occurs during an IEP meeting?
A: The IEP meeting is scheduled for the purpose of developing a student's IEP. It is usually held at the child's school. The meeting takes place after the specialists have tested your child and recorded the test results. Your child's assessment results are usually explained at the IEP meeting. The specialists will explain what they did, why they administered the tests they did, the results of your child's tests, and what your child's scores mean when compared to other children of the same age and in the same grade. When possible, ask for the test results prior to the IEP meeting so that you will be familiar with them at the time of the discussion.
During the IEP meeting, you will be asked to share with the school the special things that you know about your child, including how your child behaves and gets along with others outside of school. You will be asked to present an overview of your child's school experiences and personal life. Everyone involved will then have a better idea of your child's needs.
If, on the basis of the information discussed in the meeting and the results of the assessment, it is decided that your child is in need of special education or related services, an IEP must be developed. As a parent, you should understand why the school proposes the intervention it does. Before you sign the IEP, ask questions until you are sure that you understand what is being stated. You may request a review or revision of the IEP at any time.
If you cannot attend the IEP meeting, school personnel are required to maintain records showing how they tried to find a time and place convenient for you. If neither parent can attend the meeting, the school must inform you by telephone or by mail of the meeting's outcome.
Federal law provides for the changing needs and growth of children. At least once a year, whether you request it or not, a meeting must be scheduled with you to review your child's progress and to develop your child's next IEP. A full reevaluation must occur every three years. A reevaluation may occur more often if you or your child's teachers request it; however, it cannot be scheduled more than once a year.
Q: What should I do before an IEP meeting?
A. You can prepare for your child's IEP meeting by looking realistically at your child's strengths and weaknesses, visiting your child's class, and talking to your child about his feelings about school. It is a good idea to write down your ideas regarding what you think your child will be able to accomplish during the school year. Also, make notes about what you want to contribute during the meeting.
Q: What should I do during the IEP meeting?
A. As a parent, you are a crucial member of your child's IEP team. Listen carefully to the results of the tests, and make sure you understand what the tests are meant to measure and how the performance of your child compares to other children of the same age. Share with the team members any special information about your child, how she feels about school and how she gets along with family members. If you hear something about your child that surprises you or is different from the way you perceive your child, bring this to the attention of the other team members. In addition to sharing your feelings about your child's educational needs, consult with the other members of the team to make sure the best possible program for your child is designed.
~ KEYS TO PARENTING A CHILD WITH A LEARNING DISABILITY, by Barry E. McNamara, ED.D., Francine J. McNamara, M.S.W., C.S.W., Barron's, 1995.
A SPOONFUL OF HUMOR
(to request, email email@example.com and indicate which volume/issue(s) you prefer
Volume 1; Issue 1 WELCOME ISSUE!
Volume 1; Issue 2 SUMMER CRISIS ISSUE
Volume 1; Issue 3 SPOUSAL CONCERNS ISSUE
Volume 1; Issue 4 SENSORY INTEGRATION
Volume 1; Issue 5 CHALLENGING BEHAVIORS
(C) 2001 BBB Autism
A notice to our readers...
The founders of this newsletter and the BBB Autism support club are not physicians.
This newsletter references books and other web sites that may be of interest to the reader. The founders make no presentation or warranty with respect to the accuracy or completeness of the information contained on any of these web sites or in the books, and specifically disclaim any liability for any information contained on, or omissions from, these books or web sites. Reference to these web sites or books herein shall not be construed to be an endorsement of these web sites or books or of the information contained thereon, by the founders.
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3. Central Auditory Problems
6. Dietary Interventions
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AUTISM AND CHALLENGING BEHAVIORS
Wed Aug 29 2:00pm est
Thurs Aug 30 2:00 pm est
Back to school
Tues Aug 28 2:00pm est
coming soon: "How to Set Up a Home IBI Program", "Autism and Essential Fatty Acids", "Vaccines and Autism", "Sensory Integration Dysfunction", "Autism and Dietary Interventions"
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Attention: Single Parents of ASD children:
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