Out of Line

“Out of Line” or “Out Spoken” is something I have been called alot in my life but never more then when I had to be my sons voice. I make no apologies for being my sons voice, making those in positions of so-called power uncomfortable or for being “that mom.” If your like me your child is your life and you will do anything and everything for them including getting completely out of your comfort zone and ruffle whatever feathers need ruffling on their behalf – with no apologies. I was never rude or disrepectful to teachers, administrators or any staff I refused to let my sons needs not be met and you should to.

Rewind a year my son exited his bus in tears, shoulders slumped over telling me how his 4th grade teacher told him he would never read and I knew by the look in eyes he was crushed. Thats when my foot hit the gas and I didn’t look back. I hired an amazing educational advocate, called an emergency IEP meeting and we had my son removed from that teachers classroom. That meeting was one that I think about every damn day, the silence in that room, the lack of ownership and accountability by all present, the excuses, the lies and the tears in that room lit a fire in me that only gets stronger by the day.

Under the advice of my very experienced advocate I pursued outside private evaluations and that is something I highly reccomend. One thing you must understand is that testing performed by the school, inside the school might save you financial expense, but I can promise you benefits only the school, not you and certainly not your child. The benefit of private testing is that private testing gives accurate data and facts that you can take to a meeting and that data and those facts give you ammunition to fight for your child.

One invaluable evaluation was the Neuro Psychological testing. The most beneficial factor of neuropsychological assessment is that it provides an accurate diagnosis of the disorder for the patient when it is unclear to the psychologist what exactly he/she has. This allows for accurate treatment later on in the process because treatment is driven by the exact symptoms of the disorder and how a specific patient may react to different treatments. The assessment allows the psychologist and patient to understand the severity of the deficit and to allow better decision-making by both parties. The specific sub-tests done are discussed by the doctor with the parents and varies from child to child based on symptoms and medical history.

The second evaluation that gave us valuable insight and date was an assistive technology evaluation. Assistive technology (AT) is assistive, adaptive, and rehabilitative devices for people with disabilities or the elderly population. People who have disabilities often have difficulty performing activities of daily living (ADLs) independently, or even with assistance. Our son had his done by the wonderful specialist from Commuincare I cannot say enough how amazing this company is.

The third evaluation that gave us a most complete picture of my son was a thorough speech and language evaluation performed by UMASS in Amherst, MA. They sit with you and go through not only the medical history of the child but who this child is, they listen to the parents and that in my opinion and experience is something that is not valued enough. They test not only for speech and communication disorders, but perform hearing tests and check to see if the mouth and jaw are working together properly.

I cannot tell you how many meetings and meetings about meetings I have been a part of but I can tell you I had seven meetings throughout grade four alone. In those seven meetings alongside my Advocate armed with facts and data I took my power back as parent, I took my son’s future back and handed it to him in the form of White Oak, I gave him something more important than education – I gave him hope, I gave him a community who understands. The road was anything but easy and I am learning everyday, but as I look back how everything over the last ten year played out, the good and the bad I will not regret being called Out of Line or Out Spoken and neither should you. Fight with dignity. Fight with grace. Fight with Love.

Here are some resources I hope help you.

Speech and Language Kids

ASHA

CDC – Child Development

Understood

Wrights Law

And you…

Author: warcat36

I am single mom of a very active and bright 10 year old Dyslexic boy who learns in a very unique way. In fact we like to say Dyslexia is his super power! Most of my time is spent doing mom things but I also love to read, draw, hang out with my dog Zoe, hike, Crossfit and figure out my greater purpose in life. Life is what I call crazy/beautiful and I wouldn't change any of it - it certainly has its ups and downs but with good people by your side anything is possible :)

2 thoughts on “Out of Line”

  1. I enjoyed time spent with you and Clinton. To watch him draw and to hear him create, expand, embellish, and amend his stories on the fly based on his drawings was amazing to me. He may not be able to read yet, but his vocabulary, word comprehension, and his ability to use those words accurately is all there. He is an amazing oral storyteller. He occasionally needs cuing to refocus his ideas, but he retains his separate stories and can recall exacting details. As an author and an artist I see creative traits in him that should continue to be nutured as he grows. I hope White Oak continues to be the right school for him because every child deserves every opportunity to develop and grow in a positive, supportive learning environment, and to have parents who are willing to fight for them, not just sit back and make it someone else’s concern. It’s a difficult road to travel. I admire your strength, determination, and courage. Clinton is fortunate to have a mom like you.

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    1. Thank you kindly again for taking the time to meet with myself and Clinton. We both had a lovely time at your home and we’re both greatly inspired by your art. I love how you support all forms of Art and see something so special in Clinton at such a young age. He came home and continued to create in his book with the stencils and pencils and his Maxx keychain went right in his backpack. Thank you again for everything and we look forward to seeing you soon

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