special ed transportation

Discussion in 'Special Education' started by teachersk, Dec 20, 2010.

  1. teachersk

    teachersk Connoisseur

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    Dec 20, 2010

    Can someone tell me if it's against the law to deny a child transportation because of their behavior, when it is behavior that is directly related to their disability (i.e. autism)?


    This is happening right now and I just want to know what the deal is. Basically, the aide on the bus is not trained at all and yelps and yells when my student does anything, which (of course) makes it happen more often. So, if he bites her or tries to bite her, she screams, "Oh my god he bit me!" and then runs up the aisle, etc.

    I do not ride the bus so I don't know the exact details, but I know the demeanor of the aide, which is not helping.
    At any rate, it's all totally attention seeking - everything he does is for attention. This morning he kicked the windows and she came to tell him to stop, and he didn't stop and then bit her. I mean honestly, just let him kick the windows.

    He wears a four point D-Clip EZ-ON harness vest on the bus, for obvious reasons. They are having difficulty even getting him harnessed in because the aide is so afraid of him. I have ridden the bus a few times but not in the morning - and the scared aide is in the morning.

    At any rate, I have written a plan to remedy this, have a token system to put in place, etc. but in the meantime, they called his mom and said she has to drive him to school!!!! (Is this not illegal???)

    Please advise. I know there's nothing I can do - but I really think it's not right to trouble the parent when it's CLEARLY our fault for not appropriately managing the behaviors of a child with severe autism.

    Now the aide filed workmans comp saying that he "thrashed" her. Well, he weighs like 50 pounds so I really don't know what's going on. All you have to do is ignore his behaviors and hook him in from behind and you're golden. There are some basic behavior management skills that I am going to try to teach the bus staff, because I know they provide NO training in this area whatsoever.

    BUT I just find it odd that they're allowed to call and say he's not allowed on the bus for the next four days.
     
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  3. SpecialPreskoo

    SpecialPreskoo Moderator

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    You cannot deny a SPE child transportation. Even the LD kids that are sent to alternative school MUST be provided transportation... or at least that how it is in our system.

    Now, if he KNEW better and acted out anyway, then yes, I can see them suspending them, but if they don't know better or like you said the behavior that is directly related to their disability, then I don't see how they could.
     
  4. teachersk

    teachersk Connoisseur

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    That's what I figured. They called his mom today and said she'll have to drive him until "they figure out what to do."

    Um??

    First off, I think the aides on the bus should have to go through SOME kind of training. I mean really. This is basic behavioral principles here.

    I understand that not everybody loves children with autism like I do :cool: but I'm just saying, this is basic stuff.

    Today I mentioned, you should harness him from behind, not in front, so you don't get kicked. (Oh really?? She was amazed with that suggestion and said she'd try it tomorrow).
    I mean it is NOT rocket science .
     
  5. bros

    bros Phenom

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    Yes, it is against the law when it is a manifestation of their disability.

    They need to get someone on that bus who is certified in any techniques necessary to keep the bus environment calm for all students.
     
  6. teachersk

    teachersk Connoisseur

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    Yeah, good luck with that.

    They didn't even have an afternoon aide until about a week ago, and it's an aide from my school. So the bus has to sit outside until she gets done with her aide duties at school. Then she heads onto the bus and rides home with him. The bus brings her back to school.

    The morning lady is a different story. I don't know what her deal is but she clearly cannot handle ANY (I mean any) maladaptive behaviors.
     
  7. Proud2BATeacher

    Proud2BATeacher Phenom

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    If it is a safety issue and all modes of transportation have been tried, our district allows it. Our students get bus misconducts and after a certain amount they get an harness and if there are still issues they are removed from the bus and they are provided with a taxi. If the taxi company refuses to transport them, then I think they provide the parents money to transport their own child to school. I do know that some students are provided aides in the taxi but it really depends on the child's disability.
     
  8. teachersk

    teachersk Connoisseur

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    Oh gosh - a taxi. I can't even imagine. I can guarantee you that no taxi driver would want to take him alone.

    The bus is at least a good deal because he sits in the very back seat and they keep the other kids away from him. He is really just looking for attention. He goes in and out of these spells where he's horrible on the bus for weeks, then he's fine for weeks, etc.

    I guess we're a little nutty before Christmas... not sure.

    But he's been fine at school!
     
  9. Proud2BATeacher

    Proud2BATeacher Phenom

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    Our bus assistants have absolutely no training. We have started having meetings once a month for our bus drivers and bus assistants to provide them with behavioral strategies.

    Is the only issue putting on the harness?
     
  10. TeacherNY

    TeacherNY Phenom

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    We had a bus company (it wasn't a district provided bus)threaten the same thing when one of my students was "unruly". There was no aide on the bus since he was the only student. The bus driver was a timid old(er) man and I can see why he would be scared of the student but the kid had to get to school somehow. They finally got him a harness and then got a new bus driver although I think a trained aide would have helped. I hope this gets resolved for you, teachersk!
     
  11. teachersk

    teachersk Connoisseur

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    Well, the other day she managed to get kicked while the bus was in motion and he was already harnessed.

    Weird thing is, I am wondering what she was doing within "kicks reach" of him.

    I just don't get it. I haven't seen it enough to understand what's going on. But I know that he KNOWS which people are "afraid" of him, and then really goes for it. That's why we have control at school because his tricks don't work. On the bus, the aide is TERRIFIED of him and even says it out loud while he's on the bus "I am afraid to go near him." He picks up on this and repeats it later in the day ("Miss __ scared because of the kick, haha, Miss __ scared. [name of student] scared her today." etc.)

    So, I mean there are other things other than the harness.

    In our district, parents aren't allowed on the bus. I think that would solve it, if mom came on the bus and watched. She has control over him too.

    Just like in the afternoons, I put the harness on and he has no issues whatsoever. Don't you love it when you have control but other people don't ? It's like good but bad. I am glad he listens to me, but we need to generalize that to other adults.
     
  12. teachersk

    teachersk Connoisseur

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    Today they mentioned arm restraints. I am thinking, this is a child here people! Can't we just teach the people to deal with him instead of tying him down??
     
  13. bros

    bros Phenom

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    Dec 21, 2010

    Also, perhaps an FBA should be performed if the beavior continues to be an issue?
     
  14. teachersk

    teachersk Connoisseur

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    Dec 21, 2010

    I can tell you without an FBA that the function is attention.

    He wants people to look at him, be scared of him, restrain him, talk about him, stare him down, watch him struggle, the works.

    I mean, think about it - there's not much going on on the bus, so it can't be escape. As far as self-stimulatory/automatic function, it doesn't seem like that would be the case being that it only happens during this specific time of the day with this specific aide (home aide PM works out just FINE)....

    Plus, there is nobody to do an FBA before contracted hours. That's what's crazy about all this. The union stuff is nuts in NJ right now and for me to even be able to get on the bus with him (even though I totally don't mind because I Want to solve it) is above and beyond what the union normally allows contracted teachers to do.

    Because of all the union stuff, I'm getting paid professional development rate, which is something like $65 an hour. It's because I'm "training" the bus aide and that's professional development. (OKAY, whatever!) :whistle: I just do what I'm told. I would go ride the bus just to ride the bus to get things settled and be sure people weren't getting bit - but the union rep at my school freaked out when he heard I was going on the b us, contacted the union, and ended up getting me that PD pay. I'll take it, !

    So anyway... I start on the Tuesday after Holiday Break... made him a whole token system and wrote an entire plan for the aide to follow, if she's up to it....
    :rolleyes:
     
  15. Proud2BATeacher

    Proud2BATeacher Phenom

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    What about adding a social story to your plan?
     
  16. Proud2BATeacher

    Proud2BATeacher Phenom

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    Where does he sit on the bus. Maybe they could put him in the last seat, so after his harness is on, then the attendant has no reason to go near him until he has arrived at home/school. His mother could also stand outside of the bus as he is being harnessed/unharnessed.
     
  17. SpecialPreskoo

    SpecialPreskoo Moderator

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    If he knows that she is scared, then just about nothing can be done except swap aides out with someone who won't take any crap from him. We had sort of the same situation. The driver and the aide couldn't make this little girl behave. She was spitting in their face, kicking them and the kids, being a royal pain. I rode the bus one afternoon and she did NOTHING at all.
    They got a helmet with a face shield to keep her from spitting in their faces but the mom didn't like the helmet. (Oh, they tried rewards and such, too). I suggested getting drivers to swap routes (they've done that in the past for other goofy personal reasons) but no one bit. The mom ended up pulling her from the bus and bringing her.
     
  18. a2z

    a2z Maven

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    Yes. It is.
    Questions:
    What is the age of this student and is this behavior new?

    Are there video camera's on the bus? It would be interesting to see how a restrained child is kicking the aide.

    Has the population in the bus changed - other kids that trigger behaviors?

    Someone needs to find out what is going on. Attention seeking, maybe, but it could be overstimulation, it could be the aide triggering responses by trying to get him to act in a manner that is more predictable of a student without autism.

    Too many questions for a chatboard, but it is illegal to make the parent transport the student because of disability related incidences for very good reason.
     
  19. teachersk

    teachersk Connoisseur

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    The student is eleven years old. He is incredibly small for his age (i.e. wears size 4T clothing as a middle schooler).

    There are video cameras on the bus and they were reviewed by the transportation director who said he wasn't permitted back on the bus due to safety concerns for the bus aide.

    He doesn't interact with any other kids, as he is in the harness in the back of the bus and is the first to get on and last to get off. If he seeks attention it is usually from the adults in the room/area rather than the kids.

    It's not overstimulation because nothing has changed. He's ridden a school bus for eight years now and this have never happened. He's always needed the harness for impulsivity (i.e. getting up and running to the front of the bus, grabbing other kids, etc.) but I do know that based on what I was told about the other aide, she really does "fuel the fire" so to speak. I.e. if he hurts her, she says to him "Ouch, that really hurt ,you're hurting me, why'd you do that, no kicking, etc."

    They did require that the parent transport him during the "crisis" in which we were gathering our resources and hiring a bus aide for the afternoon route.

    It really is (to me) a simple quick fix in that the aides and driver just need to be trained about autism. I found out that the day the major issues happened, it was a random driver, and nobody talked to him about it. This could have caused it (I mean, he was doing other stuff before, so it wasn't JUST this) but that certainly didn't help.

    At any rate: I met with the transportation director and arranged for the bus driver and morning bus aide to meet me at the school on Thursday morning. I said I needed a half hour with them. I brought a written behavioral intervention plan that I came up with. I brought all of the items that went with it (token board, tokens, reminder cards, visual cues, reinforcing items, etc.)

    I demonstrated "appropriate language" to use (i.e. positive statements rather than negative statements) - "I like the way you just sat in your seat" (behaviorally defined specific praise) and the aide said, "I have never said anything positive to this kid because all he does is kick me. This is like a different child." She saw the difference that it made when you treat him like a human being and know about the little things that work well for him.

    I showed the driver what happens when he earns all of his tokens. I showed them "What to do when..." even though he was perfect that day. I spelled stuff out (If he K-I-C-K-S you, you can respond this way,etc.) because he totally knows we are talking about him.

    He was an angel the entire trip. I gave them a laminated card that says,

    If he kicks, you should ignore this behavior unless he is endangering himself or others.

    If he spits, you should stand behind him and hold the visual cue of "quiet mouth" in front of him. As SOON as the behavior ends, tell him that you like his quiet mouth. Ten seconds afterwards in the absence of behaviors, deliver a token. If he begins spitting again, neutrally state, "IF you want to earn ___, you have to show me a quiet mouth."

    Etc. ETc. ETC.

    Aide was "thrilled" with all of these basic strategies and said that she felt "empowered" to make a difference for the morning bus ride.

    Parent is driving him on Monday morning after break, but new "plan" will begin on Tuesday.

    Lets cross our fingers. (I also reiterated the importance of being confident and consistent, because if he smells your fear, you're doomed.)
     
  20. anewstart101

    anewstart101 Cohort

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    all i have to say is so true....so true
     
  21. clarnet73

    clarnet73 Moderator

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    sk, isn't it amazing that people with no training in this stuff are the ones entrusted in possibly the most dangerous situation we have?

    It sounds like you have a GREAT plan in place... let us know how it goes!
     
  22. a2z

    a2z Maven

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    Great plan. Sounds like the change was an ill equipt para who was inadvertently pushing his buttons. I hope things get better for this student.
     
  23. Teacher2Be123

    Teacher2Be123 Companion

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    I teach preschoolers with disabilities so granted I'm working with a different age group HOWEVER, one of my students we believe is on the spectrum. When I go to get him off the bus in the morning the bus driver is constantly yelling at him and screaming and I can't believe it. I would love to be able to sit this man down and tell him things he could do so kudos to you for being able to do that. I hope things work out.
     
  24. teachersk

    teachersk Connoisseur

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    http://www.mediafire.com/?lxo1rrc4v1kl4br

    If anyone is interested in checking out the bus plan, I removed our school logo and the child's name (and my name, peers names, identifying info) from the plan so that I could share it.

    Click on the link above and you can download it.
    It's a 3 page PDF document.

    I am still crossing my fingers for Tuesday! The plan is comprehensive and covers every little thing. That's how I've had success with this kind of thing in the past, so I am feeling very confident.
     
  25. SpecialPreskoo

    SpecialPreskoo Moderator

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    That's a good plan. I'm going to print that out for my principal in case we need something like that. GOOD JOB!!!

    Now, let's hope the bus aide does her part.
     
  26. MATgrad

    MATgrad Groupie

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    I am absolute awe! That is so detailed! Hats off to you.
     
  27. TeacherNY

    TeacherNY Phenom

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    How did the plan work out??
     
  28. teachersk

    teachersk Connoisseur

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    So far, out of the 4 days the plan was in place, 3 of those days were 100% awesome.

    The one day that it didn't work out, there was a substitute bus aide, who was not told about the plan, and subsequently was kicked in the stomach.........:whistle:

    After that incident, I printed two extra copies of the plan. I laminated one of them and put a binder ring to keep the copies together and placed it (velcro) on the student's bus seat.

    Also- I emailed the transportation director and said that, in order to avoid injuries like this, they really need to be choosey about who is the sub bus aide and be SURE that person at least GLANCES at the plan prior to riding the bus with him.

    Director of transport agreed and said he placed a copy in the "sub file" for that bus route.

    (SO- hopefully- we are on track!)

    But, given the circumstances, he really is doing well (when plan is followed!)

    Thanks guys!
     
  29. TeacherNY

    TeacherNY Phenom

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    Great! :thumb:
     

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