The two most important things that fell into place for us and our path for getting Nea the help she needs for her apraxia are:
- Meeting and learning from the wonderful parents in the monthly Windy City Apraxia group. I only attend 3-4 times a year, but I always learn a lot.
- Reading Schuyler's Monster. That book has taught me how to never give up in the fight for the right services for my child.
Doesn't this seem like something you read about in a "taxpayer's money being wasted" article? Something like "In other news, a $7500 device was supplied to a special education student, but it lies nearly unused, as no training was ever provided." Luckily! Luckily I am so clever. Remember how since I lost the battle for holding Nea back from Kindergarten this year, I asked for and received a 30-day IEP review meeting to discuss how the placement was working out for her? (link to that post) That meeting is this coming Tuesday.
You bet your sweet bippie I'll be asking how they plan to rectify the situation. Do we need an aide to work with Nea? I'm thinking we do.
I left a message for the special education facilitator this morning to see whether all the right people were invited. I briefly mentioned the lack of training to date. I wondered whether someone from the cooperative that supplies our schools with the Augmentative and Alternative Communication (AAC) device should be attending our meeting. I very much look forward to solving this issue.
So, would you like to know how many buttons on Nea's talker are pressed in an average 6 hour school day? How many would you guess? I mean, obviously how many words you say per day will vary based on many things. There are scientists who study that sort of thing. The answer, for Nea, is less than 20. In half her waking hours. Five days a week. Less than 20.
And sure, you could say that she verbally says a lot more. And she does. But how many is that in an average day at school? Seriously. She's the quietest kid in the room.
This isn't my most lucid blog post. I'm swinging between being angry and depressed. Which is probably good, since I need to be clear-headed and logical by Tuesday.