Sunday, November 26, 2006

removing the road blocks -- school


This is a photo of Jacob on his first official day of homeschooling -- his last day in school was April 1, 2006, this photo was taken April 2nd. Here he's learning the finer points of duck herding, and working in coordination with his brother to move them (a generalization of Stage 3 -- although working with live animals always provides PLENTY of Stage 4 variations!).

The decision to pull Jacob from school was an incredibly easy one. We had already decided that he wasn't going to attend Kindergarten in the fall, as we didn't want him in a situation where he would be discouraged to talk with other kids when he felt the urge to (as would happen if that urge occurred during class time). Since we had originally (prior to discovering that he had Autism) planned on homeschooling anyway, it wasn't much of a leap for us to make that commitment. It was just a matter of timing.

We had planned to allow Jacob to finish out his second Pre-K year, but once we identified that the school was a road block that needed removing sooner rather than later, we called an IEP meeting to inform the school team of our decision not to finish out the school year. The school had been quite supportive right along of our RDI program, and agreed and supported our decision to take him out -- there was just no arguing the progress that we were making with him, or the reason that progress was taking place. We made plans to schedule Jacob's 3-year re-evaluation for this coming January, and said farewell to the classroom.

We instantly were able to see the results of our decision -- an entire day's worth of RDI opportunities every day all week long kept Jacob in a more consistently regulated state, and started yielding the results we were hoping for. And I had the time to spend seeking out a proper Sensory Integration Therapy program now that we didn't have to work around a school day.

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