The Do-While Loop

For those who haven’t heard me say it in a while, I’m a software engineer when I’m not doing the Autism Parent thing.  (I don’t know that you really aren’t ever doing the “Autism Parent thing” once you have a child with Autism, but that’s a discussion for another time, perhaps.)  Like most jobs, it colors your perceptions of the world when you’re going through the daily grind.

So we’re approaching the next check on this do-while loop of the Monster’s IEP process.

The meetings for the Monster’s IEP are going to be the interesting ones for a while, since we’re coming up on the three-year re-evaluation cycle as well as having to plan his transition out of “Together Let’s Grow” into whatever is the appropriate placement for him in first grade next year.  The first meeting of the cycle is Thursday afternoon.

As I understand it, this week’s meeting will include the following:

  • A checkpoint on the current IEP, with adding in new goals for anything that’s already been achieved
  • A discussion of what re-evaluations to order for the Monster

I am somewhat hoping that we might broach the conversation of ESY – to forestall having to have a meeting in February to discuss this – or that we might start talking about what’s available for next year so that we can plan out his path forward rather than leaving everything for the end of the year.

From what I’ve seen, my local schools are really bad at communicating the options to parents well in advance. There’s a lovely brochure on their special ed website for what programs are available for early intervention… but that program ends after Kindergarten.  We don’t know what school the Monster will be attending next year – will he be going back to Garrett Heights EMS for another year, or will they be looking to bring him over to Mt. Washington EMS (our zone school), or are they planning on sending him elsewhere again?  It also raises the spectre of having to take him for other external evaluations to have something to balance out the reports from the city, assuming we don’t agree with what they have to say…

But then there’s also a frustration of mine – the reporting requirement.  The city did not get all of the paperwork to us for the meeting with 5 days before the date, as usual – we haven’t seen their proposed changes to the IEP (which, to be fair, I don’t expect anymore, since I’ve pretty much learned they won’t send them to me in advance), and we only received the other reports yesterday in the mail (3 days in advance).  They stuck them in the mail on the 27th, but with the holiday, there was no way that we were getting the reports with five days to prep for the session.

Oh well.  Back into the loop again…

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