Dilemna....

Discussion in 'Special Education' started by Kate Change, Dec 2, 2010.

  1. Kate Change

    Kate Change Companion

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    Dec 2, 2010

    I have a very bright, very young student with ASD. He uses PECs to communicate and is non-verbal. I've always felt that parents should have a bigger say in their child's education - they live with the consequences much more than we do. His mom is great, very involved, but now she wants to move him to full inclusion with a one to one. I like the concept of inclusion, but I don't think he can do it with out a one to one. I also don't know if he'll get approved for a one to one. I told her it was a long shot, she needs to get an advocate, all that...

    But do I encourage this? It's definitely what Mom wants, it would be good for his social skills, but it probably won't be good for his academics. Also, he needs minor help with toileting, which a regular education teacher won't be able to provide.

    I think I need to tell Mom that I don't think this can work with out the one to one, but I don't want to crush her dreams for her child. He's very bright and I think that in a very specific inclusion placement, he could do well. Outside that very specific classroom, I don't see this working, however. I suppose that all I can do is be honest. Our district gives very few one on ones and I'm not sure if she'll be happy with his placement once it happens. I do believe, though, that it should be up to his parents.

    What do you all think?
     
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  3. teachersk

    teachersk Connoisseur

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    Dec 3, 2010

    What grade is the child in?
    What level of work is he able to complete?
    If he can do grade level work with minor modifications and the toileting/PECS are the only things keeping him from regular ed, I would say go with the regular ed placement and try to pursue it with your administration.

    IF he is functioning significantly behind grade level and the only reason for inclusion would be for "socialization..." - then it's definitely not a good idea to just go for what the parents want.

    For example, I have a child in my class who is functioning at a Kindergarten level and his mom wants him in a regular ed class (I teach middle school). There is no way he'd get anything out of a regular ed class, even with an aide. The content is just too demanding for his ability levels.

    It's a thin line - if the kid is really young and not too far behind, it could be a great experience for him and for his peers. But if he's older and/or he's significantly behind his peers... inclusion just doesn't seem to be the least restrictive environment for THAT child.

    I do understand that these parents want what is best for their kid. In the end, what really matters is if the child has the necessary skills to function independently in society. Is an inclusion class going to give this child the skills he needs in as he grows up? There's the question!
     
  4. mopar

    mopar Multitudinous

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    Dec 3, 2010

    I agree. You need to decide how much behind the student is than the his grade level. If moving him to full inclusion is the goal and he is not too far behind from grade level, I would start with adding one class at a time. Choose his strongest class and slowly move to inclusion. It can be overwhelming for him, the special education teacher, the general education teacher, and the parents if there is no inclusion to full inclusion.

    Also, maybe the school will have an aide for one period. Then you can slowly increase his time and you will have data to back up the need for an aide.
     
  5. a2z

    a2z Virtuoso

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    Dec 3, 2010

    Seems to me mom knows it is only workable with a one on one aide with the child which is why she asked for it. Now, if the reason the school will not do it is because of money, there is a problem. What workable solutions do you have for this student in regards to socialization that would not involve a one on one aide and have a chance at being successful. How is he being held back academically because of placement? If he is really bright and capable of understanding the materials in inclusion and working in inclusion WITH PROPER SUPPORT, then the school should be providing the proper placement and support.

    For the school to say no even without a proper discussion or the school says no for financial reasons they are setting themselves up for a lawsuit.
     
  6. bros

    bros Phenom

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    Dec 3, 2010

    Determine how far (if any) behind their peers the child is.

    If it isn't a significant distance, try it on a trial basis. Perhaps you would want to put a provision in the IEP that if the child gets too.. overstimulated, they can come to your room as a "safe zone"

    Wean the child off of being in self contained
     
  7. clarnet73

    clarnet73 Moderator

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    Dec 3, 2010

    I've also worked with "reverse inclusion," where typically-developing peers are brought in to help facilitate social skills, etc. That might be a way to try out a larger group without overstimulating him.
     
  8. Kate Change

    Kate Change Companion

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    Dec 6, 2010

    We do have classroom guests for a half hour a day and we go into the regular education setting for about an hour a day. This year, the student is in kindergarten. He is doing very well in our program, especially for a child who is non-verbal. I don't think he can be effectively assessed without heavy modifications, so it would be hard to know what he is learning in regular education setting.

    In terms of the one on one, it isn't up to our school. We're in a very large district and the district makes those decisions. Our district considers having a one on one the most restrictive environment and currently, very few students outside of self contained classes have a one on one. I have another student with a one on one and that para is necessary for the student to be safe in a self contained class.

    The parent isn't looking at inclusion at our school, because we don't have a special education teacher for each grade level and I am with my students 100% of the day, so I could not go in and team with that teacher.

    The parent wants to see her child fully included into a regular education class because she thinks it will help lessen his autism and that the students in the class will be great peer models. She also wants him to make friends with verbal, non-autistic children. I think her vision is beautiful, but it would take a lot for this child to learn with out modifications. While he is very bright, he can not print or speak and needs to be taken to the bathroom, encouraged to go and helped with his pants. If he isn't taken, he will wet his pants. I think this is too much to ask of a gen ed teacher. He has an excellent memory, great comprehension and is very good at following routines, so I think that he is very bright, but I can't see this working with out that one on one.

    I love that the parent cares so much, but if she hadn't suggested the move, it would never have occurred to me.

    I think I'm going to restate the importance of the one on one and that it would be a district decision. I don't want to crush this parent's dream, but it may need to become a bit more realistic.
     

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