Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Looking to the future

Today we started down the road that I have been on as a teacher many times, but as a parent-a first. Today we held an EPM (Educational Planning Meeting) for Gabe. It is funny as many of these as I have been to, I am still surprised at how strange it felt having it be "my" child we were talking about. It was very intimidating walking in and seeing the table of 7 education professionals sitting there. There was OT, Speech, vision impairment specialist, Teacher consultant, Center director, classroom teacher, and School psychologist. At this meeting we begin the process of getting Gabe Special Education services and to see what he needs right now and what he may need in the future to help him to be successful in school. We will have another meeting in a month to put the plan into place for him.
Right now Gabe is doing great-having only been home for 5 months he is doing wonderfully, but there will be a time, when he may need some help especially for his vision loss. It was very frustrating for me that after we came home, I found that in our area we do not offer much for children who are delayed between the ages of 3 & 5. As great as he is doing, Gabe is still very far behind other 4 yr olds in all areas. It is my hope that after a full summer home, running and playing, that we will not see a need for OT or speech. But, I wanted it to be in place if he needs it after school starts. That being said however, the need for services for his vision will not be something that goes away. He may become more comfortable with his glasses, he may get more used to them, and his eyes will continue to grow. But, there will be things that are going to be out of the 'norm' for my Gabie and I want him to have every opportunity that he can and to be successful.
So, during out meeting we agreed that Gabe will have a 'working' file and we will revisit his needs as next year (preschool) begins. Right now he is still adjusting, so the need for OT and speech may diminish as time goes on between now and Sept. The vision impairment specialist will continue to monitor were Gabe and his teachers need for support as right now in daycare they are doing a wonderful job accommodating him. Taking it one step at a time :-)