This morning we had Monkey’s annual IEP meeting. We walked in expecting…nothing…since we already knew that he was staying at this school, that his teacher was changing but that the classroom aids would remain the same and who his classmates would be. All that was left were goals and we don’t sweat IEP goals. This is the one area that we’ve always trusted the professionals to handle responsibly. Sometimes we’ll comment if it sounds like it might not work because of an FXS related quirk but most times we just smile and wave.
The meeting was as anti-climatic as expected. Monkey has met a lot of goals this year and made progress on the rest. Everything was stepped up a notch but his main deficits remain the same so the target areas remain the same as well. After we had worked our way through all the steps of the IEP we reached those last few pages…the ones with supplementary aids & services…that’s where it got a little fun.
Though we had amended Monkey’s IEP since we had signed the horrid thing to get away from last year’s team, there were still some remnants in there. Monkey’s teacher was asking to remove some things, like the note that said though his parents wanted him to be included in Science it wasn’t happening. We deleted the ridiculous note recording our protest of the math substitution as well.
Then his teacher slid a page across the table toward us and asked us if the “Vision Statement” was accurate.
The team envisions that with the additional support of a self-contained classroom, beginning in September 2011, Monkey will make progress with the skills required to be increasingly included in the general education classroom.
I looked at it and laughed and told her, “This is not our vision statement. Ours was rejected, this was written by the team leader and it’s ridiculous.” They could not believe that our vision statement had been rejected, she said, “If you say you want him to grow up to be a missionary in China, I will put it in there!” I then told her that our Parent Concerns was also rejected and rewritten but we’d won that battle. Honestly.
Just as we were winding down she looked at us and said, “When Monkey first started here I looked at him and I looked at his IEP and I looked at him…it wasn’t the same kid.” All we could do was nod, we knew that the IEP as written last summer was not appropriate but we were unable to get the team leader to back down.
I’m beyond the ((ZOMG MY HEAD WILL EXPLODE))anger part of it now. Now all I really wish is that I could see the team leader again, or at least his teacher, and talk about it because they didn’t do themselves any favors by digging in their heels so drastically, they didn’t do Monkey any favors by distorting his abilities and challenges and they didn’t do his new team any favors by preparing them for a child who never existed.
I’m so grateful that his current team members were able to see him for who he is in spite of it all. It just reinforces our main contention all along which is, if you give him the chance, he will prove himself. Every time.
Onward to 2nd grade we go!