Monday, November 7, 2011
The X games Baer Style
Well, I had my first meeting with the IU (Intermediate Unit) here in our County. This meeting was to set up and discuss our transition with Little Baer from Early Intervention into the IU. The day he turns 3 he is not eligible for Early Intervention and will move on to their services. Along with those services is the world known as IEP's....This sport is EXTREME! And it takes a lot of planning and knowledge on a parents part to get through them, get what your child needs, and not have anyone cry.
I have learned a lot from Brother Baer and his IEP's. Although he is only in first grade.....I have learned the hard way. And every ounce of information I have learned has come from another parent or an advocate. So....trust me when I say that this school and their "workers" are NOT in it for your child. They aren't looking for what's best for Little Baer. They are looking out for them. And their needs and what they want. So, knowing this and experiencing this has been a rough road. If you aren't a special needs parent, consider yourself lucky. If you are....PLEASE read up and talk to other parents. More importantly talk to them about what actually is available and do not trust and believe in what the system tells you. They tell you all kinds of things that aren't true in hopes that you aren't smart enough to realize that.
So, Anyways, Here we are this morning with the IU Case Manager and our trusted EI Case Manager. I say trusted because she is. She knows I know enough now to hold my own. And she also knows that I know what THEY don't want me too. So, she sits back and smiles at the games we played during the meeting. Oh bless her! I have loved my EI team and we have made great progress. Here are the games I played with the IU today:
Them: "We will notify you of his placement in the Preschool the IU designates"
Me: "No, actually I will be touring the facilities and telling YOU which preschool he will be placed in" *smiling*
Them: "Once he is evaluated, we can notify you of what his areas of delay are and *IF* he qualifies"
Me: "I am excited to see the evaluation reports, but I already know he qualifies for services. The 25% delay is scored at his outpatient therapy center every 13 weeks for insurance purposes. So, I keep a close eye on his progression. And he will fall below the 25%"
Them: "Well, once we know *IF* he qualifies (They keep telling me IF...as IF *rollingeyes*) we can get a script from the Dr so that he can have the services"
Me: "Please give me the paperwork to get the script now because he *WILL* qualify" (See they aren't going to tell me he doesn't have a 25% delay so they don't have to pay for OT or PT. He does and it's documented from outpatient)
Me: " My plan is to have him in the IU preschool and then transition him into a "typical" preschool next fall"
Them: "Outside preschool would be your choice but the financial responsibility would be with you"
Me: "No actually, the IU will pay for the preschool of my choice if we determine he is able to attend a typical preschool. So, we will work towards that goal, but we will start with the IU preschool."
Them: "Well if you keep him in the IU preschool we will have our therapists there for his therapy"
ME: "You will have a therapist at the typical preschool as well if that's where he is placed."
Them: "We need to talk with our transportation department on allowing you to change the school he is assigned"
ME: "No actually you don't. But don't worry about the transportation department anyways. My 3 year old isn't riding a bus"
Back and forth we go. Them...Me...Them...Me....FINALLY after about a half an hour of back and forth, she says something EPIC!!!!
"Is there anything that you DON'T know about the process that I can help you with?"
Nope, I say....I'm good thanks.
See my friends....I didn't spend the past 3 years of my life in 7 therapies a week and countless hours of research, talking, and learning my schmidt to have them tell me he "doesn't qualify" or "he doesn't need" a service. I will be the one to decide that. I will be the one to decide if and when his therapies stop or if he will be included and where he's included. I will not stand for the "least services we can give this child" attitude. I will not stand for "he's a special needs child so we don't need to educate him right" attitude. I will not allow you to push me around or push this Little Baer around. I will not do that again.....So, take note my dear, I will be in control of this child's education. I will decide the process. You will either work with me, or against me. But I can promise you I will win.
:) The X factor in momma Baer is stronger then you have estimated.
On the good side...She knows I know my Schmidt. The ground work has been laid and I can feel confident that we will have a much better go round this time. (Oh and the fact that I told her the that Will's last IEP meeting lasted 2 1/2 hours and is 64 pages long...Which sounded kind of like Rocky sayin' he was getting pumped for the next round) :)