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General Parenting Issues The purpose of this forum is to discuss general parenting issues related to children with AD/HD(ADD & ADHD)

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Old 04-10-11, 01:47 PM
jcwagner1 jcwagner1 is offline
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Help- My child is being denied an IEP. again.

I just discovered this forum and am amazed at the information available. I have spent many years learning how to live with ADHD and now I am a parent of two children with ADHD. My youngest is 8 years old, is a year behind in school and is being denied an IEP for the second time. My oldest is an A student but struggles with organzation and handwriting.

I noticed significant difficulty when he was at preschool age with learning colors, letters, numbers, group interactions, fidgeting, and the list goes on. I requested the local school system test him. The results were that he was intellectually capable of learning and therefore didn't qualify for early intervention. They told my my expectations were too high and that I was comparing him to his older sister who is academically advanced.

A year later, I took him to the kindergarten readiness screening that is required in my school system. They were unable to get him to fully participate and gain his attention long enough to complete the testing. They scheduled a retake and the result was the same. As a result they placed him in a full day kindergarten program. At the end of the year the teacher felt he had made progress but was not ready for first grade. He was then placed in a full day K-1 program. In this class he responded to the teachers methods and excelled. During this year we also pursued a formal ADHD diagnosis and regularly saw an ADHD family therapist.We also began medication for him.

The following year in first grade he was quickly identified as "at risk" for reading & writing and placed in a Title 1 readng program. His reading skills did progress but slowly. He experienced several behavior incidents and his anger and frustration levels have risen. The insurance company started denying the ADHD family therapist. I felt the doctor was merely a med dispenser and I got him on a waiting list for a behavioral center. Mid year my husband and I separated. Brett began meeting with the school adjustment counselor.

The next year, 2nd grade, he was again placed in the Title 1 reading program after receiving very low grades in the first few weeks in the regular classroom in reading and writing. I have found that his reading has progressed but his writing skills are stagnant. The behavioral pediatrician has again confirmed the ADHD diagnosis. She has also ordered occupational evaluations, psychotherapy evaluations and an auditory processing evaluation. We have increased his medication.

I again requested that he be evaluated for an IEP. The test results were given to me at the meeting. I now know that I had the option to request that I receive these results prior to the meeting. During the meeting several things were discussed. The cognitive abilities testing showed his is in the average range in all areas. The ability vs achievement test results showed below average scores in Broad Writing, Brief Writing, written expression and academic fluency. In the brief description I received at the meeting this was not what I understood. It was explained that his achievement scores were low because he is behind a year in school and hasn't seen some of the material. Sounded logical to me at the time.

The school counselor raised concern about his declining self esteem and possible depression. I asked why he is in a Title 1 reading program if he is capable according to the testing of being in the regular classroom. The team felt is was because of his lack of effort. I asked if there was any reason why if he should be able to get a score suggested by the reading teacher on the weekly reading skills test that he not be placed back in the regular classroom. The team said no. So we agreed on an 80. Two weeks later he achieved the 80 and is now in the regular classroom. I asked that he be provided with a writing skills tutor. The team agreed that Brett would be put on the list for the TAT (Teacher Assessment Team) meeting and any suggestions for organizing, etc from this meeting would be communicated to me by his teacher. I also asked that a checklist be put in his agenda to ensure that it is being used by him and to communicate with the teacher. The meeting ended with my hesitantly agreeing that Bretts ADHD was not affecting his making progress in school. I left there feeling like it was more an emotional issue and that counseling must be the answer. I was struggling with how it could possibly be determined that a child who is a year behind in school, who is struggling to write a sentence could possibly be said to be making effective progress. I brought the test results to his behavioral pediatrician who reviewed them and was not happy with the determination of the team. She went through the results with me and explained them in more detail. After three weeks of not receiving answers to notes from the teacher and no communication regarding the TAT suggestions I realized this was not going to work.

I sent an email to the Special Ed director and told him that I strongly disagree that the ADHD is not preventing him from making effective progress. Told him that I felt I had been taken advantage of and that I felt there were people at the meeting who also disagreed with the decision but did not speak up because I did not know the terminology to use to express my confusion of the test results. I have asked that the team be reassembled and the results reviewed again. He suggested that I meet with him to discuss it and I said only if it will expedite the IEP implementation. He called and left a message that he would reassemble the team if I strongly felt that was the only option. When the team reconvenes, what should I expect that they throw at me? What terminology should I be using to get my son the IEP and the help he needs? I can not afford an educational advocate so any help as to what I should to be prepared to respond to and what is the "correct" way to respond?

If they agree to an IEP what sort of accomodations can everyone suggest I ask for that wil be most beneficial?

Thank you all for taking the time to read this long story.......
Distraught mom
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Old 04-11-11, 12:26 AM
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Re: Help- My child is being denied an IEP. again.

Welcome to the forums, jcwagner1! I don't think I'll be of much help to you on this issue (I'm a teen in the process of being diagnosed, and doubt I will request accommodations). I suggest that you post this under the "Parenting" section, as this section is for teens with ADHD. Perhaps you'll get some more helpful responses there. Good luck!
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Old 04-11-11, 07:27 AM
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Re: Help- My child is being denied an IEP. again.

Whenever I hear young children having problems with reading and writing, I usually suspect eyesight problems. Have you had your son's vision tested recently? I think many schools miss this as a possible problem.

If he didn't qualify for an IEP, you can request a 504 because of health issues. You can request organization assistance or shortened assignments (1/2 the required work). This would need a doctor's note.
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Old 04-11-11, 08:06 AM
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Re: Help- My child is being denied an IEP. again.

Why wouldn't you want him in the Title 1 program? In our school that's a small group reading program 3x week meant to help kids who need a little extra help. (my 1st grader has it)

What do you think he needs to succeed? Did they do an OT Visual Processing eval? How is his handwriting/fine motor skills? What did the auditory processing eval show?

Does he need to be pulled out for special ed or can he do the regular classroom work with some accommodations? That would fall under a 504 plan. I would be very surprised if they give you a hard time about a 504 plan with his ADHD diagnosis and struggles. (although nothing should surprise me anymore)

Does your town have some sort of parent advisory counsel? That is a group of parents with kids in a variety of special ed programs. It might be worth seeing if they have any meetings or presentations you can attend.

Take a look at this website, regardless of your town/state it's one of the best and most informative sites around (and it's in MA)

www.concordspedpac.org

Welcome (There are a few of us from MA here, too)
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Old 04-13-11, 07:12 PM
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Re: Help- My child is being denied an IEP. again.

You may need to better explain why you don't want title I. It is confusing to me that you want an IEP but won't accept basic help from title I services. They may be wondering why you want an IEP when you refused other services that could help.
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Old 04-13-11, 07:58 PM
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Re: Help- My child is being denied an IEP. again.

A Guide to the Individualized Education Plan (IEP)
http://www2.ed.gov/parents/needs/spe...ide/index.html
Department of Education guidance assisting educators, parents, and state and local educational agencies in implementing the requirements of Part B of the IDEA regarding IEPs for children with disabilities, including preschool-aged children

Also,
I know it's reversed here, but have you tried all this? I copy and pasted it from the website above.

13. What If Parents Don't Agree With the IEP?
There are times when parents may not agree with the school's recommendations about their child's education. Under the law, parents have the right to challenge decisions about their child's eligibility, evaluation, placement, and the services that the school provides to the child. If parents disagree with the school's actions-or refusal to take action-in these matters, they have the right to pursue a number of options. They may do the following:

Try to reach an agreement. Parents can talk with school officials about their concerns and try to reach an agreement. Sometimes the agreement can be temporary. For example, the parents and school can agree to try a plan of instruction or a placement for a certain period of time and see how the student does.
Ask for mediation. During mediation, the parents and school sit down with someone who is not involved in the disagreement and try to reach an agreement. The school may offer mediation, if it is available as an option for resolving disputes prior to due process.
Ask for due process. During a due process hearing, the parents and school personnel appear before an impartial hearing officer and present their sides of the story. The hearing officer decides how to solve the problem. (Note: Mediation must be available at least at the time a due process hearing is requested.)
File a complaint with the state education agency. To file a complaint, generally parents write directly to the SEA and say what part of IDEA they believe the school has violated. The agency must resolve the complaint within 60 calendar days. An extension of that time limit is permitted only if exceptional circumstances exist with respect to the complaint.


http://www.help4adhd.org/en/education/rights/idea
IDEA also grants increased parental participation and protection for students.
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Old 04-13-11, 11:40 PM
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Re: Help- My child is being denied an IEP. again.

Hi there, I sent you a private message. It is bothersome that they put him in a class where he gets extra help, he's been held back but then is blamed for this because they think he's not trying hard enough.

That's a pretty clear indication they don't really understand adhd.
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Old 04-14-11, 09:18 AM
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Re: Help- My child is being denied an IEP. again.

Evaluations at school are to uncover "learning disabilies" not Heath impairments, which ADHD is. If your son (just like my son) is evaluating above the line in the sand you will not be able to get an IEP for that reason. Some kids do have learning disabilities as well as ADHD, and some do not.

HOWEVER, Other Health Impairment (OHI) is a legimate diagnose for special services. If you have a doctor evaluation for ADHD he IS ENTITLED. Some schools do not lump that entitlement into an IEP but maybe a 504 or title 1.

“Other Health Impairment” is one of the 14 categories of disability listed in our nation’s special education law, the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA). Under IDEA, a child who has an “other health impairment” is very likely to be eligible for special services to help the child address his or her educational, developmental, and functional needs resulting from the disability.

IDEA states that:
Other health impairment means having limited strength, vitality, or alertness, including a heightened alertness to environmental stimuli, that results in limited alertness with respect to the educational environment, that—
(i) Is due to chronic or acute health problems such as asthma, attention deficit disorder or attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, diabetes, epilepsy, a heart condition, hemophilia, lead poisoning, leukemia, nephritis, rheumatic fever, sickle cell anemia, and Tourette syndrome; and
(ii) Adversely affects a child’s educational performance. [300.8(c)(9)]

Your child cannot be denied, you just are not asking and they are not offering under the correct identifier for services.

My son has an IEP for "OHI", fortunately our school is very willing to give Cody any help and services he needs. We are not real detailed in the IEP, but we work together closely the teacher, principle and I to accomadate in areas that are needed.

Some of the things in his IEP are;
1. In class support teacher, for Math, Reading, Language - but she is in the room with him 4 hours a day so she helps him with orginiazation, writing down assignments. She will read long stories to him, that other children read on their own.
2. Out of class services, extra help in Reading and Math 3 days a week.
3. Extra time and accomadations on tests.
4. No red pen corrections, I added this because when he was younger receiving a paper marked up in red was very alerting to him and his class mates.
5. Retake of tests that are done poorly.

http://nichcy.org/disability/specific/ohi

Your school may not be able to give IEP support if the child does not have a learning disability, even if he on the line - the have draw line. But they do have programs and services for OHI which your son should have no issues with are similar to IEPs.

Good luck!
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