Wednesday, February 17, 2010

They are seeing the light...

Last month, I had my first parent-teacher conference with Aidan's teacher, Ms. S. She told me how she and Ms. B. were happy to have Aidan be a part of their class...As she said, They loved having him, and The kids loved having him in the class, They miss him when he's not there, etc. I was very pleased and relieved to hear these sentiments. However, she admittedly said that they were not sure how to approach Aidan's Report Card. I told her frankly, that I wasn't so sure for them either. Given Aidan's disabilities, it would seem unfair to me to judge him on, e.g., penmanship...given the fact that he has trouble with just grasping a pencil independently. So Ms. S left the report card rather incomplete. She had said that her and Ms. B were very concerned about "doing right by him." Since they were general ed teachers, they felt like they lacked the familiarity with how to rightfully judge him in this special situation. She stated that they were going to confer more with Miss L, the Inclusion Facilitator, so that they could be fair to Aidan and judge him appropriately.
Thus, in our next Inclusion Team Meeting, the subject of the Report Card was my first question to Miss L. She explained to me that the Report Card, for the most part, does not apply to Aidan, since he is a special ed case. His progress and assessments are based on his IEP (Individualized Educational program) goals, which also include academic and social goals. Miss L would be the one to suggest, adjust, and revise the academic and social goals for his IEP. Even though Aidan won't necessarily be measured by the standard kindergarteners' academic curriculum, Miss L said she would adapt the curriculum and assess Aidan with it to see where he stood academically. Miss L informed me that she had already done some assessments and has concluded that Aidan knew all his letters, phonetic sounds and colors. I knew Aidan knew these things, but I am so glad someone else was able to see that he knew them too! Nothing makes me happier and more proud than when outsiders are able to see the bright shining light in my little Aidan. Though he says very little, he listens and absorbs everything around him. Yes, he is a smart cookie and has a beaming personality with a sense of humor beyond his age. I was tickled when a classmate's mom told me while we were volunteering in the classroom, that she loved Aidan's sense of humor. I found that quite interesting particularly because she does not spend that much time in the classroom but apparently had enough time still to appreciate his sense of humor. I am so glad that they are seeing the light.

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