Today was Brian's transition meeting for kindergarten next year. A table for twelve and an hour and a half of my time to do so. I can not believe how big his team is- it always seems to be growing!
It was a nice meeting, I always enjoy listening to everyone's opinions on my son and I enjoy being listened to and really being the final say. I've been lucky in most of our existence dealing w/special needs to work with some really great people (not to say, I haven't complained here & there). I have to admit, that as a person, I am very easygoing, try to avoid confrontation, and have a hard time standing up for things I believe in. In all honesty, I am a person that could be walked all over very easily. BUT when it comes to my kids I have found I have a strength- and you better be prepared if you are going to try to challenge me on what I think is best for them.
I was able to get our ESY (Extended School Year) services to stay the same- which is great as usually they try to cut back on your child's hours. The goal of summer service isn't for them to learn more but only for them to "maintain". I just turned to our service coordinator and said, "Yup and you know how I feel about that. My son's autism doesn't just stop in the summer- I wish it did- but his needs aren't any lower in the summer than they are in the winter".
We talked about the transition next year and feel they are very open to my ideas and realize that I am t he best source of information on how to handle this transition. I am still nervous about the school system we are in- they don't know for sure how their autism program is going to look next year. Hence, I didn't sign any IEPs or any forms today as I told them I was uncomfortable doing so until I had a clearer idea of what they will be offering him. Which I hope is sooner rather than later!
We're going to do several visits throughout the summer to the school and with the various teachers to try to give him a headstart as well as starting school off with me accompanying him a couple days as well as only 1/2 days for a little while- they start kindergarten full day here.
All in all, I feel pretty confident about the meeting and how it went.