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Am I being paranoid?

(26 Posts)
Jimjams Thu 25-Mar-04 13:49:47

Just received a letter from the autism outreach team. It's been sent in advance of ds1's review of progress meeting next week.

Anyway it summarises each term- and mentions his wobbly patch in Feb (when he was out of fish oils- although people look at me like I'm a loon when I say that). Anyway that bit makes farily awful reading (and he was dreadful then) things like "At times, there were 2 adults working with A to maintain his attention for a matter of minutes".

Anyway scary paranoid bit is last paragraph "careful consideration now needs to be given to the way forward, as A approaches his fifth birthday and statutory school age".

What on earth does that mean? I'm HOPING it means that he needs to get into school full time asap. I'm DREADING that it means he needs to go to the autism unit (over my dead body is he going there- well he's not- we woudl home educate).

I've tried to ring the SENCO - for a couple of admin reasons and was going to quiz her a bit but she's out of the office until next Tuesday- day of the meeting.

I'm not keen on ringing the person who wrote the letter as if I am being paranoid then I look as if I have a persectution complex.

Only thing I can think of is to email her as nursery need to know whether to put in an application for support for him.........

Some 3rd party interpretations needed.

littlerach Thu 25-Mar-04 13:55:30

Why do you object to the autism unit?
Email is a good idea, less pressure etc.
Not much use, am I?!

fio2 Thu 25-Mar-04 13:58:04

Jimjams, I dont know what to say but it seems like a pretty standard thing they do put. Maybe saying A needs XYZ now because of his age and ABC needs to be met so he can stay in school full time. Thats what it sounds like. He has settled well at school hasnt he? They are most probably ready to have him full time now, maybe thats what it means?

I am not very good at these things but remember they cany force you into doing anything you dont want to. Also I know it makes grim reading, try not to take it to heart

Loobie Thu 25-Mar-04 13:58:34

Jimjams why dont you want him to go to the autism unit?My ds is 8 and has been in mainstream since starting shcool at 5 1/2,he has struggled the whole time even though he has had support and i am patienly waiting to hear if he has got a place in our local autism unit,when i find he has i will party till the end of the world.Is a specialist unit totally set up to cater for the needs of autistic children so bad?

Jimjams Thu 25-Mar-04 14:07:42

The autism unit has a staff ratio of 3 children to 1 adult. Far too low for a non-verbal child. I think this particualr one is quite good for AS, but not autism.

He would spend his whole time in "the rainbow room" - safe, but ignored.

Anyway have sent an email and left a phone message about nursery funding so may get some idea.

fio2 Thu 25-Mar-04 14:13:25

He doesnt have to go there anyway. I thought the whole point of him going part time to school was to get him used to going full time maybe in september? I know dd's nursery will actually keep them til 7

Jimjams Thu 25-Mar-04 14:19:07

Yes but the LEA have been itching to get him out of nursery for ages now -that doesn't bother me I'm more than happy for him to go full time to his current school. Just not to the autism unit- he would send his days sat in front of the TV (except he won't watch TV at the moment so he would just spend the time flitting or stimming round the rainbow room.)

fio2 Thu 25-Mar-04 14:20:15

oh dear surely they cant force that though? cant the school vouch for his improvement there?

Jimjams Thu 25-Mar-04 14:23:52

No they can't force it through- I would just tell them we'll be home educating and applying for them to fund ABA That would get them worried.

Really hope I'm being paranoid. Just a bit worried as to why the statementing officer is coming as well.

I must be being paranoid- surely someone would give us some warning? And he's just had a lovely report........ Apparently he joined in whole school singing today (listened for about 15 minutes before leaping up and down shrieking).

fio2 Thu 25-Mar-04 14:25:24

awww bless him is your statement due for review? maybe thats why the officer is going?

Jimjams Thu 25-Mar-04 14:39:21

No we've only just finalised it! I'm concerned that the lack of SALT will mean a push for the unit (although it shouldn't as the missing SALT used to visit there as well).

fio2 Thu 25-Mar-04 15:02:06

arrrghh!! well at least you are backed up with info, I hope you are being paranoid anyway!

Jimjams Thu 25-Mar-04 15:08:06

Just spoken to the SALT, and it all sounds positive. I think I was having a paranoid minute. You know how you can't quite believe it when everything's going well.......

Jimjams Thu 25-Mar-04 15:30:29

Now spoken to the person who wrote the letter- and I was being paranoid! She put that in to ensure that he will be in full time by the time he's 5

Now I just need to worry that the school aren't happy.

The statementing officer is going as there is no ed psych available!

fio2 Thu 25-Mar-04 15:34:43


RexandBen Thu 25-Mar-04 16:39:43


Jimjams Thu 25-Mar-04 17:54:15

thanks- talk about creating stress for myself. I now have a thumping head ache (although that may have more to do with being up since 3.30am this morning )

Jimjams Fri 23-Apr-04 14:31:52

No I wasn't being paranoid- the autism unit was mentioned today

At the moment we're continuing with mainstream but don't know how long term it will be. Weird thing is though they don't want him in special school (although that may have more to do with pressure for places). I said absolutely no way ever to the unit so we shall see what other options they give. The ed psych did agree never to suggest the unit again I suspect in practice it means he will stay in mainstream until he/school can't cope.

Aaagggghh- sad thing is he's doing pretty well at the moment as well!

I think next time someone suggests moving him I will suggest full time ABA

Blu Fri 23-Apr-04 15:38:18

Well it sounds as if you put a stop to it at just the right moment, JimJams - surely they will take account of your feelings and judgement?

Can I interrupt for a sec and ask whhat stimming is?

KPB Fri 23-Apr-04 15:52:56

Jimjams - Is the autistic unit the only option or have they suggested anything else???

Jimjams Fri 23-Apr-04 16:20:31

stimming is "self stimulation" things like waving fingers in front of the eyes, in ds1's case arching his back.... OK in moderation in my view- but a problem if left as ds1 can't then do anything else.

NO I don't have to send him. Parental choice these days. the head did say to me "no-one can make you send your child to a school you don't want them to go to". They may get stuck though as I don't think there are any other options. There's a special school which specialises in communication disorders but very hard to get into- I doubt there would be a place unless he was excluded from m/s iyswim. The neighbouring LEA has a new unit opening but a) I suspect they'll be full with their own kids and b) I can't see our LEA funding a placement there when they have their own unit.- politics.

The one thing I do know though is that he is NOT going to the unit- I know he will go backwards if he does. They don't think the children are capable of very much (at least not ones like my son).

Blu Fri 23-Apr-04 16:29:17

When will the decision-making take place? If he has a period (all on fish oils!) and establishes that he can manage in m/stream, won't that make the case?

I think you are absolutely right not to settle for the unit if you know it isn't right. Don't mention that you would home-educate if necessary, and maybe they will be obliged to accept him in the neighbouring borough on appeal etc.

It's so UPHILL.

Jimjams Fri 23-Apr-04 16:38:00

I think the placement will be reveiwed half termly. next reveiw is in June......... Aaaggghhhh talk about not feeling settled. I think the issue comes down to language and what is meant by inclusion. In the head's eyes he isn't properly included as he still spends a lot of time not in the class- but to be honest I think he may need that wherever he goes in order to learn. Certainly he isn't going to be able to learn anything in a group setting very easily. He won't until he has language.

I suspect if I mentioned ABA funding the LEA may go into overdrive though!

Know what you mean about UPHILL. I thought today's meeting was going to be a brief yada yada yada affair, not this (expected this at the last one). It's not like a suitable shcool even exists really. All so depressing.

maryz Fri 23-Apr-04 22:07:35

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Davros Sat 24-Apr-04 10:38:45

My understanding is that you have a RIGHT to insist your child is in m/s. They can't boot him out of m/s very easily, its Govt policy and, whatsmore, they have to prove that the placement does not meet his needs and prove that a move would meet them better - quite tricky. A problem about parental choice is likely if parents want X special school and the LEA want Y special school, i.e. disagreement about specific placement but not type of placement. I think threatening ABA is a good back up plan, I'm sure it works sometimes.
As far as I know, Inclusion means physcially being at the school. Integration is something else and what the Head is talking about.

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