Friday, June 6, 2008

Something is.....

Wrong is a strong word....it's not that something is wrong in my world, it's perpetually wrong...my children, while a tremendous source of joy, are a constant reminder of the injustice in the little corner that is my world.
The past couple days...something is...amiss? Left of center? I can't really label it.
Things are good overall...Matty's IEP meeting yesterday went well. It's was really a non-meeting, more just a thanks for the memories type of meeting with his team at his current elementary school. His plan/goals for next year will be reviewed 30 days after he starts at his new private school in the fall. I'm over the shock that he's leaving the school district. We saw a bunch of Matty-types walking around there. He's going to fit in, God willing and finally he won't be the kid sticking out.
Ben's meeting is not until the 12th, and since he's aging out of his pre-school handicapped program and moving to Kindergarten the district completes evaluations in all disciplines.
That's it....that's the problem.
As I sit here typing about my blue days, I'm realizing that it's because I keep getting reports in the mail about how LOW functioning Benjamin is in the disciplines he's been evaluated in so far. When you see your son who in age terms is 5.3 (age.months) and read that in some report areas he functions (by their guesstimate) at a 2.6 level....um, that's half his age. OUCH! It's not meant to be hurtful, but the sting is, well, unbearable...enough to bring tears to your eye by just seeing that harsh reality in print. You'd think I'd be used to it, I've had one kid or another perpetually evaluated for the last 10 years!
It reminds me of when I started working for Marsh back in the early 90s, and Microsoft Word was all the rage. I remember using their spelling and grammar checker and being surprised when it scanned my oh-so-professional letter to some risk manager of a Fortune 50 company and it told me that it was written at a readability level of an 11th grader....it's like...you're a computer, what do YOU know?
I got one report that claims that out of 26 letters in the alphabet, Ben can correctly identify 8 of them, or 30%. Not only does he know all of the capital letters, he's got about 3/4 of the lower case down too.
You know, I'm just a mom, not an educator, and I completely am humbled by people who teach my Fragile X children and all children with special need. But, there has to be a way to better gauge what a child who lacks expressive and receptive communication skills knows. These assessments aren't a good snapshot of what kids know, yet they are used in consideration of their educational futures. Call me crazy, but that's not accurate.
So, Ben functions at a level half his age, according to some report. Hmm...I guess had I given birth to a typical child, they do what he's doing now at age 5 when they are 2 and a half.
Wow...why can I not see the blessing in that??
I need to adjust my attitude, of this much I'm sure...I still have so many things, meetings, planning, ceremonies, decisions in the next two weeks that the thought makes me shudder.
OY!
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