Probable transition from speech unit to MS later this term - any tips?

(7 Posts)
Seawig Sun 27-Sep-15 23:21:08

DS (5) is now in his fourth term at a speech resource base based in a fairly local school. He attends the local MS village school on Fridays to hold his place and keep his peer group. He is now in Y1 and has made great progress with his phonological disorder in the past year and is up for review.

The LA normally fund 4 terms with exceptional 5 terms being funded when the SLT says it is vital. I have been asked to come to a joint meeting with the SRB and the village school so it looks like Christmas will be the finish date, not Easter, as the MS school only expect to be involved in meetings about transition.

I am still concerned about his speech though. DS had severe glue ear which affected his language development and even now (with grommets in) when tired or upset he can be hard to fully understand. I am really concerned that once out of the SRB he will get no support with language as a year of weekly SLT before the unit did nothing so I feel his disorder only responds to intensive retraining.

I will be pushing for further outside support and I know there are other children waiting to get into the Speech base .... But, but, but ...

Anyone else been in this situation? He has improved but enough to be back in a class of 30 without any school help or SLT in school time?

I am going to contact the SRB this week as I understood we would have a meeting to discuss his progress and their assessment of his end date; now the village school have been invited along it feels that decision has been made so I want to know where we stand.

DS doesn't have an EHCP as the SRB operates without them here and when I have mentioned it it was said to be unnecessary, not sure we would get one or need one now he has improved a lot.

DS does get upset at transitions in day to day life, anything that involves putting down the Lego and getting dressed, or breakfast, going to school, going to bed. He says he hates the speech unit school and the taxi there and back, and now he hates the village school as Y1 is work not just free play as Fridays were last year in Reception for him.

Last two Friday's have had him sobbing when he saw he was expected to sit down and write on a wee white board and couldn't go to the Lego and build models (sobbing "there's no playtime, there's no playtime"). The SRB days have an angry upset boy often refusing to get in the taxi though apparently mostly ok once there.

Just don't know what he needs right now, how to transition him back as easily emotionally as possible for him, and whether to push for Easter instead (though I appreciate it is the SLT decision so I doubt that'll get anywhere) and what outside help I should try and get in place for when he does leave.

Sorry for the rambling, full of cold and tired. I've name changed since all the hacking but was Lovethesea for those who helped before.

OP’s posts: |
2boysnamedR Mon 28-Sep-15 00:45:43

Here kids stay in slt units for entire education if needs be. Shame that's not the case for you ( but don't be fooled my LA is run by satan so it's not all good!)

Ask about the ehcp. Does he cope in ms? Can he access the ciriculum? If he can't then he needs a ehcp. If needs be gather up evidence of why he can't access mainstream and push the school to apply for one. If they won't they can still get a weekly slt in ( my la say they are £30 a hour - which is lovely as they are actually £60 privately #sarcasticface)

Write down lots of questions

How will they monitor him?
How will they baseline him and then measure progress?
Who will do that? As it has be a qualified person?
What happens if his progress flatlined or falls?
Who do you turn to?
How often will they asses him to ensure he doesn't fall behind?

Then set yourself a shortish target 6 months. If it isn't going well then insist they asses him for a ehcp.

Try hard to make the school do that.

I know so many parents get support when in your shoes as the kids struggle to access MS and that's all the evidence needed for more support.

But it's never easy and with the right help he should be able to access MS. Just ensure they have a good plan and they stick to it.

It's easier and cheaper for them to cock a transition up

Seawig Mon 28-Sep-15 14:33:10

Thanks, I've had it confirmed that no final decision has been made but the village school would need to be part of any application to extend to a fifth term so they have been automatically invited to the meeting.

I do know the SLT will be advising he leave at Christmas.

The points about how and who will be assessing his progress once back in MS are really useful. If the rest of his speech will sort itself in time fine, but as you say someone needs to be assessing that rather than just hoping it happens.

Any thoughts on key emotional supports during transition? I sent him off sobbing in the taxi again this morning and it is as if we are back in the first term again in terms of his distress at going. I think he is fine once there but it is clearly stressful for him.

OP’s posts: |
2boysnamedR Mon 28-Sep-15 14:41:56

Can't they ease him more slowly? Go up to three days for a week or two before it goes full time?

blaeberry Tue 29-Sep-15 00:15:15

I am in a very similar position to you. My ds is likely to go back to ms soon but I don't think his speech has come on enough. He was also struggling in his ms class and upset in the taxi at the beginning of term. After a couple of weeks he seemed to settle. I only found out why a week ago; he wasn't managing in ms class so after a couple of weeks he got a 1:1 most of the time. So now I need that to follow him too! If your ds is struggling to cope with the undifferentiated curriculum that might be why he is so unhappy.

Seawig Fri 02-Oct-15 11:43:24

I've spoken to the SLT and she does think he is ready to go to MS at Christmas but was open to my suggestion of planned monitoring assessments for him once back in MS. So in 3 months, 6 months, 12 months perhaps?

I've asked her to do a full assessment of his current speech disorder and delays so we have a baseline to make sure he doesn't regress or go off on a linguistic tangent with the sounds that are still delayed. I stressed I felt it needed a trained SLT to keep an eye on him not just us presuming he is going forward with sounds in a positive linguistic trajectory.

The SLT feels some of his remaining wrong sounds are just too hard for him right now so pushing with more SLT won't work yet, but might as he gets a little older. So I've said the monitoring could also then tell us if he is ready for more 1:1 work on his remaining issues or still developmentally not there yet.

Feeling a lot more positive about it all.

Now we can focus on managing his emotional state of mind as he rejoins MS in Y1 and adjusts to the currently hated adult led learning. Life is more than Lego and DS does need to listen to adults better but I'm keen to minimise his stress and I don't want his fears being written off as just bad behaviour if he is anxious around his communication still as well as just being 5 and wanting to do his own thing.

OP’s posts: |
blaeberry Fri 02-Oct-15 11:50:26

My ds has most sounds (apart from L and TH) but still needs to work on sentences and social interaction. At the moment we have been told he will continue to receive weekly 1:1 SALT when he returns to ms.

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