It is not just the words of concern, or the expressions of confusion and anxiety. It is also the body language. Shifting back in forth, listlessly meandering around the hallway, not knowing what exactly to do or to say. Parental Zombies.
The latest refugees from the PPS Cost-cutting Pograms.
For some it just SUCKS in a big way, as they scramble to find another preschool for the fall term, mere weeks away. And for those who know, most decent schools have been full since sometime in Feb/Mar. And then there are those of us (and I do mean "us") who are trying to avert an all out crisis. Sticking our little ones in an overcrowded EI class somewhere else just really isn't much of an option.
But I have complained about that enough already here.
Need to get practical. Where to send little Miss O.
One option under serious consideration is a private preschool, with supplemental visits by a "community-based" educator, a specialist who comes in and provides speech and OT, a few hours a week. There is, of course, EI at another school, but I have already gone over why that isn't going to happen (I know, famous last words). And then there is Home School, with the same community based educator as the private option. Not so great of an option when one of our focuses is socialization.
So, breaking it down. My short term goal for Little Miss O (LMO) is to increase her socialization with her peers, as well as adapt her independent ways to fit the structure of the classroom. Academics are in there too, but I can work on that from home. I can't provide the other goals for her by home schooling.
So, home school off the table. Now the other two.
EI in a public school would help her with the structure piece, but due to size, over-crowding, and an MESD system in flux as they attempt to implement the Inclusion Model, it may be so over-whelming as to shut LMO down socially (this has happened before, so this is more than speculation). But, on the other side of the coin, maybe I am underselling her, maybe she just needs a little push to break through that boundary and succeed. Am I being over-protective? Helicoptering in a little too close? Isn't my long term goal to move her towards a typical school experience?
Hmmm. Private Preschool it is, if I can get her into one. Or, maybe...
Many of her classmates are attending both. A few days here, a few days there. Is that too much transition (she seems ok with shifting gears most of the time)? Test both models, see which one she flourishes in.
All parents are afflicted with the same thing - Parental Guilt (goes along with being a Parental Zombie sometimes). Oh, the guilt. My daughter is in the living room now watching Wow Wow Wubbzy, I am probably killing off her brain cells at this very moment (and she is eating chips - hey, they ARE organic). I am sure there is a circle of hell set aside for parents like me. I am second guessing every move I make, hoping to God she doesn't end up on Oprah talking about how I ruined her by putting her in the wrong academic program (wait, Oprah is retiring, right?). How if I had just put her into THIS school, or got her a few more hours of THIS therapy, she would not be a drug-snorting former boy-band groupie with a serious stimming habit.
So, if you have seen any of my other posts, you might now Isaac academic history has him labeled in our home "Hurricane Isaac". That soon-to-be second grader is packing some serious baggage. Dude has a PPS rap sheet! I have asked him what he remembers from Sabin, from Roseway Heights (he doesn't recall Jason Lee Elementary at all). He remembers his friends from Sabin, especially Jackie. At Roseway, he wondered why he couldn't go back, that he didn't really like Chase and Kevin, but otherwise, he doesn't recall any of that unpleasantness.
If you ask Isaac about school, what kind of student he is, none of that matters. My little Buddhist is living in the here and now. He knows he likes school, has friends there, likes his teachers, has fun with his social skills aide, is really good at math, and always gets 100% on his behavior/IEP goals sheet. He is confident about Second Grade, and is excited about going to a new school in the fall (but more excited about having August off).
Basically, he has moved on. And if EI (dear god, NOT at Roseway), even part time, does not work with LMO, then we will cut our losses and move on. Because, at this age, my kids do move on, and maybe testing those waters just a bit at this age isn't a completely bad idea.
Yeah. I know. More Famous Last Words. I am full of them of this week.