My son currently has a great placement and a great case manager. He seems to enjoy school again which is awesome. To some this may mean time to kick back and relax. Not to me. To me this says, it is possible and why did we have to wait this long?? Yes some of the improvement is related to his maturity but so much of it is related to the correct supports and the correct attitude from the school.
But why do we have to fight to get these services? I read an interesting article recently about the IEPs being blocked and why they may be stonewalled. I also recently attended a conference and the one seminar I attended was about transition planning and how to get involved locally. I am attending the next regional counsel because as I said at the conference, getting involved at the high school level is too late. Major changes are needed but also some small changes would make a large difference.
Through my friend @opiecoop on twitter I was directed to Save our Schools . I also recently found Occupy Education. I am so excited to have found a way to get involved locally and on a more larger level.
One of the areas that comes up is inclusion, the idea of least restrictive environment. We are working on complete inclusion for my son but it is not ideal. Not because he can’t handle it but because the teachers and other kids can’t handle him. The other kids want to run around the hallways and joke around instead of learning. This is an issue for all kids, not just aspies. In my opinion all kids need some changes to the system.
I am not sure what the future holds for my son. Will he go to college? Hold a job? I don’t know. But I do know that as a society we should foster learning regardless of the outcome. I am a lawyer but I refuse to work in a law firm because they did not embrace my lifestyle of family first. That is fine, I ended up with a good job and my integrity. And regardless of how much I use my law degree for work it was not a waste. I have used that law degree many times to advocate for my son and I hope to use it in the future to advocate for the needs of many.
As I travel this new journey I am sure I will have more ideas on how to fix education but I have a few ideas to start: (my first youtube video!!) Stay tuned for more….