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Old 05-12-2009, 11:01 PM   #1
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Looking for insight

I have one child, son who is now seven years old. In every aspect he has been above average in development- meeting all milestones early inspite of having had several seizures shorly after he was born.

He is a good boy, polite, articulate, funny, he is able to focus and stay on task at home with no problem but his 1st grade teacher keeps pressuring my husband and I to have him evaluated for a learning disability due to his lack of focus in class, messy handwriting and poor organizational skills. Let's not forget he's a first grader.

I have him in a very good private school for which I pay $800.00 dollars a month. His report cards are good. He has no problem focusing at home.
I am extremely frustrated. The teacher believe's he needs an individual eduation plan - Isn't that what I pay $800 bucks a month for.

Historically all the kids in my family are late bloomers - of the five three of us repeated 1st grade - AS adults there are two lawyers, two teachers and one registered nurse. What can I do to get this teacher off his back?

any input would be appreciated

HPPY

 
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Old 05-13-2009, 09:46 AM   #2
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Re: Looking for insight

Just tell the teacher "no", not at this time. You want to give him a chance to mature. Some are too quick to decide that a student needs to be evaluated and put on meds. or an alternative plan. He's only in first grade and he's a boy. Boys mature more slowly than girls and it's normal for it be more difficult for boys to sit still in a classroom for extended periods. Boys and girls are different, but some teachers aren't aware of this, it appears. School is almost over for this year. Next year be sure to ask for a teacher that is more understanding of boys and their behaviors. For the money you're paying you should be able to get anything you want

 
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Old 05-13-2009, 07:09 PM   #3
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Re: Looking for insight

What is the issue with paying $800 a month? Do you think that this automatically makes your child exempt from having a possible learning disability or possible ADHD?

Forgive me for being so blunt, but you really need to do what's best for your son NOW, and not later. Your child's teacher spends a great deal of time with him, and I'm fairly certain she probably sees things that YOU don't. I'm pretty sure that she's there to HELP him and not hurt him.

An IEP is not some dark, gloomy, horrible thing. I don't know why people get so bent out of shape about it. It's there to protect your child, should he be diagnosed with a disability.

Here's a suggestion, visit the classroom. How does he compare to other kids? Can he follow the teacher's directions - are they simple directions? Or does she give too many at once? Is his desk truly that messy? Can he find materials quickly or does he hold up classtime because he's still looking? Is his writing illegible? If this is the case, then I would be concerened. Your son is no longer "just a first grader" as you have said. He'll soon be a beginning second grader because the year "will soon be over" as the previous poster insightfully said.

Now, on that note, why are you so hesitant to get testing done? Are you afraid of the outcome? YOU are your child's best advocate. You owe it to him now.
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Last edited by LauraLu; 05-13-2009 at 07:11 PM.

 
Old 05-13-2009, 09:33 PM   #4
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Re: Looking for insight

Quote:
Originally Posted by LauraLu View Post
What is the issue with paying $800 a month? Do you think that this automatically makes your child exempt from having a possible learning disability or possible ADHD?

Forgive me for being so blunt, but you really need to do what's best for your son NOW, and not later. Your child's teacher spends a great deal of time with him, and I'm fairly certain she probably sees things that YOU don't. I'm pretty sure that she's there to HELP him and not hurt him.

An IEP is not some dark, gloomy, horrible thing. I don't know why people get so bent out of shape about it. It's there to protect your child, should he be diagnosed with a disability.

Here's a suggestion, visit the classroom. How does he compare to other kids? Can he follow the teacher's directions - are they simple directions? Or does she give too many at once? Is his desk truly that messy? Can he find materials quickly or does he hold up classtime because he's still looking? Is his writing illegible? If this is the case, then I would be concerened. Your son is no longer "just a first grader" as you have said. He'll soon be a beginning second grader because the year "will soon be over" as the previous poster insightfully said.

Now, on that note, why are you so hesitant to get testing done? Are you afraid of the outcome? YOU are your child's best advocate. You owe it to him now.
I may have forgot to mention that I am a psychiatric mental health nurse I had the Chief of the pediatric medicine at the hosptal evaluate him and he found nothing wrong. Also I have worked with dozens of adults who were subjected to medication experiments with mind altering drugs as children and have found in the long run that these medicines do more long term harm than good. A recent long term longitudinal study published in the American Journal of Psychiatric Medicine demonstrated that the short term benefits of better classroom behavior were not outweighed by the risks of giving children medications that are for the most part not even FDA approved for children under 12.

The agenda of the public school system and IEP testing is to remove any liability schools and teachers might have in educating children, it excuses poor performance, and serves only to dumb down our kids. I repeat he has been tested and nothing was found to be wrong. IF you read my last post you would have seen that he has good grades and is meeting if not exceeding all his developmental milestones. His writing is legible. He reading and comprehension are at the 3rd grade level. I have seen so many kids screwed up by the system that I don't want my kid to be a statistic. Especially when the people evaluating him are responsible for a 50% school drop out rate. The truth is children are performing worse now than their cohorts were 50 years ago, when we didn't have a bunch of psychobabble and medication to put our kids brains to sleep.

I have a brother who went through this same issue with his son. HE refused testing and having my nephew labled and that young man is now a very successful executive for a Japanese comglomerate. My own husband was labled as learning disabled and forced into special classes that were so frustrating for him until another teacher discovered he was actually highly gifted, He too is a sucessful well adjusted adult.

So you can say what you want but I won't just blindly hand over my child to a bunch of people who haven't demonstrated any ability to do more that read charts and graphs. As the saying goes those who can do, those who can't teach public school. I will leave my son's diagnosis to a real professional.

 
Old 05-14-2009, 10:59 AM   #5
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Re: Looking for insight

So have you visited his classroom? How does he measure up? Mom knows best. What do you think?
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Old 05-14-2009, 08:29 PM   #6
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Re: Looking for insight

First, as a public school teacher myself, I don't understand something. One of your comments was, "those who can do, those who can't teach public school." However your child is in a private school and your "beef" is with them. Why would you complain about your child's teacher and what she wants to do out of one side of your mouth, then blame everything on the public school system out of the other side of your mouth? Your child is not a part of the public school system, yet you are still complaining about what they want to do. I don't get that.

Second, it sounds like a maturity issue to me. Many children, especially boys, take a bit more time to mature. That fact that he is able to focus at home, probably when he has one on one attention, is a red flag to me that you are dealing with immaturity. I agree with asking them to give him more time to see what happens. However keep in mind that no matter what you child can do at home, one on one, he still has to be able to function and socialize in a group, probably for the rest of his life.

I also agree with Laura's suggestion to visit your son's school and volunteer and observe if you haven't done that already. I had a parent once who just didn't buy my recommendation to have her son repeat Kindergarten until she spent a morning in my classroom. It was an "eye opener" for her. She admitted to me after one visit that she could understand why I was concerned after observing the others in small groups and changed her mind about his next year's placement that very day.

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Old 05-14-2009, 08:32 PM   #7
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Re: Looking for insight

I also wanted to add that it is indeed possible to be of average intelligence, or even gifted, and still have a learning disability. I am not saying your child has one nor I am saying your husband necessarily did, but typically a psychologist will not even consider LD as a possibility for a child who tests out with a low IQ. It's just something to keep in mind.

Nancy

 
Old 05-15-2009, 09:59 AM   #8
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Re: Looking for insight

Quote:
Originally Posted by BioAdoptMom3 View Post
I also wanted to add that it is indeed possible to be of average intelligence, or even gifted, and still have a learning disability. I am not saying your child has one nor I am saying your husband necessarily did, but typically a psychologist will not even consider LD as a possibility for a child who tests out with a low IQ. It's just something to keep in mind.

Nancy
First let me say that I apologize for earlier comments about the public school system. Yes my child is in private school because I am very concerned about how children are marginalized by what passes for education in this county (USA). There are many fine teachers both public and private - I just wish the system allowed the really good ones to teach and got rid of the bad apple's right now there are some 160 teachers in LA unified on administrative leave for offenses ranging from incompetence to allegations of sexual abuse who are all drawing full salary while at the same Good teachers are being laid off. It just makes no sense.

To answer earlier threads _ I have had him evaluated privately by both a pediatric clinical psychiatrist and a and a psychologist with a specialty practice in neuropsychiatric problems. He has tested well within the normal ranges. I brought letters to his teachers and the administrator of the school.
The adminstrator even told the teacher to drop it. That's the frusterating part. That this teacher won't accept the clinical judgement of the professionals who have evaluated him and insists that I take him to the Public school system for IEP eval.

I have observed him in class (bearing in mind he knew I was there) and while he wiggles a lot. He's not up running around, disrupting class etc...
He is a bit slow at math but but so was I. He's actually reading and comprehending at a third grade level. He does have a very vivid and active imagination and will sit for hours at home drawing and writing "Stories" about space aliens and fantastic animals.

As for his organizational skills - yes his desk is mess- this is not an excuse mind you but neither my husband or I are terribly organized - so he comes by it honestly we'll all just have to work harder on that one.

He can write neatly when he wants to and last night when he had to copy a verse from the Bible I reminded him to use "Your best printing" he did great.
But I do notice it gets sloppy when he's in a hurry to finish and get to something fun.

Again I'm sorry if I offended I was just angry when somewrote that going along with the testing would be "advocating for my child" when in fact I feel that not allowing him to be pigeon holed into a label is a better form of seeing to his best interests.


Hppy

 
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