Saturday, August 29, 2009

Elliot-Superstar!

Elliot’s IEP review went very well. Of course, I had a lot of apprehension about it, and I was wondering just why we were reviewing a mere one week into school. Turns out that it was simply a formality and his abilities were not documented since he was an infant. It was simply part of the Federal guidelines.

I have also had a great deal of trepidation regarding school in general terms. But Elliot is a rock star. His specialists are phenomenal and his peers are adorable. I have seen a marked improvement in Elliot’s overall demeanor in barely one week!

The vice principal in charge of the program is simply an angel. I thank him over and over and he keeps telling me that I pay taxes and these services are provided as part of the ‘plan,’ mandated in fact. But really, the program would be squandered if these wonderful people were not in place to implement it.

The school has ordered an adapted swing for the playground for Elliot and only Elliot. The swing is as sturdy as it could ever be. They were worried that Elliot could not participate with the others during outdoor activities, so they ordered the swing to have in place right away.

Elliot has a special chair so he can eat (or rather drink his Pediasure) with the rest of the class during meal times.

Elliot has an “Elliot shelf” in the classroom that his toys are kept upon – away from the germs of the toys that are kept on the floor.

Elliot has a one-on-one special education instructor, a speech therapist, an occupational therapist, a physical therapist and a special person that will be brought in to work with him on adaptive communication strategy. What’s more, they all love my boy.

The IEP review brought nothing but rave responses about Elliot’s social skills and desire to participate and learn. Yes, we all know that he is behind, and also behind others his age with Down syndrome, but these people don’t bother with that. Elliot will be at Elliot’s full potential, and these people would have it no other way. I could not be more impressed.

They have invited Isaac and me to lunch anytime we wish to visit. They have kept things just as sanitary as humanly possible. They are even helping with potty training. They have agreed to bring in the help of our personal developmental psychologist regarding Elliot’s oral aversions. Simply stated, they have never said “no” to anything that I have brought to the table.

Yesterday when I dropped Elliot off at school (I walk him to the door and his wheelchair is waiting), the children all came running to him.

“Look, its Elliot!”

“Hi Elliot!”

“Can I play with Elliot today?”

They too love my boy! They see little to no difference. What a brilliant program – one that will both help my boy as well as let his little peers know that “normal is not always normal,” that “difference is good,” and that we are all created by one God. Of course, religion is not brought into the public school system, but I saw nothing but God’s little angels surrounding my Wee E.

Elliot is a superstar and momma could not be happier!

6 comments:

datri said...

That is so awesome and inspiring!

Y'know when Kayla was in PreK, I was always amazed at how all the "typical" kids just loved her. We'd walk down the halls and kids would run up to her to give her high fives. Even though she was so far behind developmentally.

Kayla, of course, was basically oblivious to the whole thing. She didn't care. But it was so awesome to see.

Kelly Zimm said...

This makes me so happy!
Glad to hear it's going so well!

Stephanie said...

How is Wee E enjoying school?

Debbie Yost said...

Glad to hear it is going so well. I remember how nervous I was when Peanut turned 3 and she has had a wonderful preschool experience. It sounds like you have a great team for Elliot.

amy flege said...

yeah!! i am soo happy that its working out so well!!! you didnt have to tell me was a super star.... i alreay knew that! hugs!

Michelle said...

how wonderful that you have such a great team working for/with Elliot!