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Old 02-23-12, 01:08 PM
Bella'sMom Bella'sMom is offline
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IEP for ADHD-I not being followed... but...

Hi y'all,

I'm venting a bit here, fair warning. I'm about to take Bella for her first appointment at Kennedy Krieger in a few minutes, because her former therapist/psychiatrist have "referred" (quit on) her. Meanwhile, today my husband and I went to the school (walk-in) because last night Bella came home without her spelling homework AGAIN (about the 10th time this month) and I had written a note to her teacher asking her to PLEASE make sure that she had the book before she left for dismissal... I got no response on voice or email, but Bella says the teacher told her "that's your own responsibility".

Yes, it is. But no, it's not. The child has ADHD-C, Anxiety, and now they are thinking it might actually be bipolar. She has noted organization issues on her 504 from last April, which was written for her initial diagnosis for ADHD-I...

So we went to the school to talk to the VP, who had a meeting with a teacher, and was going to call. That was 0930. It's now 1154. No call. I want them to call so I can ask the VP to MAKE the teacher check her bookbag. It's not spelled out word-for-word on her 504, but since I observed them not following the 504 just two weeks ago, I can't say it would help if it was... that said, I said I want a new 504 meeting because what she has now is no longer valid for her current diagnosis. But in the meanwhile, would it kill the teacher to check a backpack?

I'm just so... I don't know. LIVID. I make sure Bella does her homework, but only if she brings it home... I can't be a stay-at-home, the money numbers simply don't work. A few weeks ago when Bella was fainting at daycare, I was picking her up after school every day for a week. She forgot homework materials EVERY DAY! I sent her back into the school to get them EVERY DAY! I can't do that when I work until 5. Last week, Bella lost her spelling list. I sent a note asking for a new one. Every day. For a week. Crickets. No list.


I understand they are trying to teach many children. I understand they are trying to teach responsibility. But you wouldn't expect a kid with broken arms to load her own backpack, why would expect a kid who goes in her room to get her shoes and comes out 15 minutes later with a new outfit and still no shoes to be able to remember all her homework materials?

My kid is *SICK*, not lazy, not (deliberately) defiant. And I am a really GOOD parent. I have come to both invited parent visitation days (I don't go more often because my presence is exciting and therefore disruptive). This last one, two of the teachers never even said hello when I was in the room. The third answered small talk only when small-talked to. She mentioned they were almost out of pencils, so the next day I sent it 150 new, pre-sharpened pencils for the classroom as a goodwill gesture. I wasn't expecting a thank-you note or anything, but a "thank you for the pencils" would have been nice the next time she called complaining about my kid...

So my plan is: take Bella to her appointment, show the 504 to her new therapist as well as the changes I want and ask for feedback on whether they think the interventions will be appropriate/adequate. Discuss with the VP my concerns that Bella's teachers are ignoring stated things on her 504 (seriously, if you don't follow the 504 when you know the mother is in the room, is it reasonable to expect it is EVER followed?) Request a new 504 meeting to change the 504 to meet her current diagnoses, and request that someone make sure this poor kid leaves the school with her right materials each afternoon.

So, gurus... what am I missing? And does anyone know any good advocacy resources in Maryland? I plan on asking at Kennedy Krieger, but I figured I'd ask here, too.

Argh.
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Old 02-23-12, 01:16 PM
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Re: IEP for ADHD-I not being followed... but...

Make a documentation trail, EVEN IF the teacher does not respond to your e-mail messages, write them, they are documentation.

Write each time something is missed, document document document.

If your child reports something, write to the teacher asking for clarification..

It's all part of the documentation process.

Also, You need to ask for an IEP rather than a 504, IEP's require more from a teacher and therefore they do sometimes try and avoid them.

also, sent you a pm.
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Old 02-23-12, 05:37 PM
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Re: IEP for ADHD-I not being followed... but...

Quote:
Originally Posted by ginniebean View Post
Make a documentation trail, EVEN IF the teacher does not respond to your e-mail messages, write them, they are documentation.
Write each time something is missed, document document document.
If your child reports something, write to the teacher asking for clarification..
It's all part of the documentation process.
Also, You need to ask for an IEP rather than a 504, IEP's require more from a teacher and therefore they do sometimes try and avoid them.
also, sent you a pm.

I don't think adhd qualifies for an IEP, unless there is a medical condition in addition to the adhd (e.g., speech impediment). However, you can send a written request (use certified mail) asking for a review and update to the 504 plan because she is not getting the help she needs.
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Old 02-23-12, 07:35 PM
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Re: IEP for ADHD-I not being followed... but...

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Originally Posted by ccom5100 View Post
I don't think adhd qualifies for an IEP, unless there is a medical condition in addition to the adhd (e.g., speech impediment). However, you can send a written request (use certified mail) asking for a review and update to the 504 plan because she is not getting the help she needs.
Actually that's not true, ADHD falls under "other health impaired" designation and you can get an IEP for a child with ADHD.

ADHD children qualify for IEP (Individualized Education Plans) which would place them under the Special Ed umbrella of OHI (Other Health Impaired) by IDEA part B. It means that their attention problems either impact them so severely in the classroom that they qualify, or an additional disability has been recognized that they need special education to meet their goals. IEP's are LEGAL documentation, that the teacher and administration must follow, and if they aren't they are liable

A 504 Plan is a legal document. The teachers are supposed to adhere to the plan as drawn; if they do not, you can bring a civil rights action against the school. Sometimes, they need a reminder of that.....
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Old 02-23-12, 11:15 PM
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Re: IEP for ADHD-I not being followed... but...

Here's what the ACT says:

B. Eligibility for Part B services under the "Other Health Impaired" Category The list of chronic or acute health problems included within the definition of "other health impaired" in the Part B regulations is not exhaustive.

The term "other health impaired" includes chronic or acute impairments that result in limited alertness, which adversely affects educational performance. Thus, children with ADD should be classified as eligible for services under the "other health impaired" category in instances where the ADD is a chronic or acute health problem that results in limited alertness, which adversely affects educational performance. In other words, children with ADD, where the ADD is a chronic or acute health problem resulting in limited alertness, may be considered disabled under Part B solely on the basis of this disorder within the "other health impaired" category in situations where special education and related services are needed because of the ADD.


C. Eligibility for Part B services under other Disability Categories

Children with ADD are also eligible for services under Part B if the children satisfy the criteria applicable to other disability categories. For example, children with ADD are also eligible for services under the "specific learning disability" category of Part B if they meet the criteria stated in 300.5(b)(9) and 300.541 or under the "seriously emotionally disturbed" category of Part B if they meet the criteria stated in 300.5(b)(8).

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Old 02-23-12, 11:42 PM
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Re: IEP for ADHD-I not being followed... but...

The actual designation differs from state to state. ADD is a physical disability in Colorado. The key piece is to demonstrate that her ADD impacts her access to content and instruction. There may also be a 504 coordinator in your district. Contacting them with your grievances might result in better compliance.

I sympathize with the teacher forgetting to put the spelling homework in Bella's book bag. Here's a thought: Could you work with the teacher to put a visual reminder that would help Bella remember to get her spelling homework before leaving?
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Old 02-24-12, 12:37 AM
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Re: IEP for ADHD-I not being followed... but...


Hi everyone, thanks for the responses, it's so wonderful to have a community of folks who understand these things!

The good news is, I did finally get a call from the VP at 5pm, she said she was having a crazy-busy day and I can understand that. She verbally agreed to schedule a new 504 meeting and to update the 504 and talk to the teacher in the meantime to be sure that the work is coming home.

So, that said, let's hope the verbal agreement turns into actual action. I am, of course, following up with an email tonight.

I should have mentioned, but I was too busy freaking out in Mamabear mode... Bella is 8 and in second grade. Her diagnoses have been changing and evolving faster than the flu since her original ADHD-I diagnosis in spring 2011. So I have to give the school some slack for the 504 not changing weekly with the refined diagnoses. We were told back then (I saved the email conversation) that she would not qualify for an IEP because she did not require "special education" at that time, and by that criteria, she still doesn't.

I know this will sound strange for me to say, but "unfortunately," Bella's academic performance is well above grade level. She doesn't fit the mold the school seems to be used to for a special needs kid. She is either ADHD or bipolar or both, they aren't sure yet, and she has anxiety behaviors, but she reads well, loves math... except when she doesn't... The point is, she's not on the autism spectrum, and we work hard to make sure she's not "falling behind", so I think the teachers just don't "get it" that this isn't just another spoiled, entitled kid with letigious parents.

She has a little boy in her class who she's known since daycare days who is on the autism spectrum, and a few other kids in the class who seem to have behavioral issues, but I don't know them or their business. The point is, I can appreciate how tough the teacher's job is managing a very diverse classroom. And I can recognize that Bella might seem like a "normal" smart girl being deliberately obnoxious and lazy... but that's because she's on her best behavior at school (sad but true). I don't think anyone who'd seen her buck-naked on top of the china cabinet like an angry rabid squirrel (last week, I can't even remember why,) would say "wow, that's a perfectly normal little girl right there!"

The 504 coordinator for the school last spring said the 504 would be just as legally binding as an IEP, just would not include "special education" services such as speech therapy. The 504 does have the block marked that she would get accomodations for standardized testing, but really all we want for that is a quiet place and someone to keep her on-task, since she gets distracted so easily.

I am hoping that the VP will now re-iterate to the teacher what "legally binding" means. The poor teacher has a lot on her plate, and I absolutely respect that. But in the end, if Bella never brings home her work, she eventually WILL fall behind, and that will make even more work for the teachers in the long run.

For the poster who mentioned the "visual aid." I am thinking of making a little "checklist" laminated card that could go on her backpack this weekend, but I still will need an adult to make sure she actually follows it. So for the 504 update we are asking for someone to ensure she has her materials and has written her instructions and understands them (this is a refinement of what is already on her plan)... then how they make that happen is something we will work out specifically with the teacher or the coordinator. So yes, we are planning on it, but it won't work if they don't implement the darned thing ...
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Old 02-24-12, 10:14 AM
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Re: IEP for ADHD-I not being followed... but...

Another possibility would be for you to get extra copies of the text books at home, so that if she forgets, you'll still have a copy to work from.

My son has an agenda that is provided by the school. Does Bella have one of those? My son's is a soft cover spiral bound one with 3 holes prepunched through it. My son came up with the idea to put the agenda inside a hard 3 hole notebook with pockets on the inside covers. This has helped him keep things organized, since the agenda and pockets are all in one place. He also has a pencil bag with prepunched holes, and that fits inside the notebook as well.

You could tape a reminder list on the front of the hard notebook, as well as laminate a small one and attach it to the outside of her backpack...
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