I had a meeting with The Teacher today. It went really well, I have confidence that we'll have a good relationship this year.
The Kid's shouting in class, and he is hitting. These are her main issues with him right now. We decided to enact the smiley face thing, splitting it up between AM and PM and these two issues. I agree that a smaller number of clear goals will be more obtainable. I will give him stickers for each happy face, on a chart that when complete will result in a "we-do-something-fun-together" reward. The Kid is especially partial to musuems (when he was younger, he called them you-see-'em's. he he)
Of course we talked more universally about The Kid and his personality. How he's not been diagnosed as learning disabled, but how he's so behaviour-exceptional that it should be coming eventually. I asked, if we all agree that it's coming eventually, can we not just get started on an IEP now? [IEP=Individualized Educational Plan] She's going to look into it. SCORE ONE for now.
I may be naive, but I think an IEP would be great. We should all have IEP's, in an ideal educational setting, right? We're all individuals, we all learn differently, right? But for The Kid, it's documentation, it's a road map, it's support. I believe enough in our educational system that they are not a stigma... I hope, anyway!
Now on to Dr. Lloyd of the University of Virginia... I really appreciate his comments, if I understand them correctly. I link to his site below. He says, "...many are reluctant to provide services to children because doing so requires that we identify an individual—label him or her as in need of services—and there is a risk of false positive labeling. In my tour through some of the blogosphere (ahem; sorry), I came across a post by a parent of a young child who doesn’t appear to be afraid of false positives, but who clearly has her son’s interests at heart." He then goes on to quote the part of yesterday's post that exposes that I CRIED to the teacher on the FIRST DAY (further exposing the one thing I was squeemish about writing about because, well, who wants to be a crybaby).
I think it's really interesting what he wrote, just in that first sentence:
1. Schools are fearful of the individual
2. Schools would rather categorize students into labels by their needs (essentially changing the individual into a member of a group)
3. Schools are fearful of mis-categorizing said students (read: individuals)
So, the end result is what I'm experiencing. Stay the course, even though we don't know what that course is nor do we have any viable roadmap to get us to where we want to go. (huh, sounds kind of like pres's plans for the war).
I'll leave it at that, and thank Dr. Lloyd--he's got some interesting stuff on his many websites. ooh, especially this great article written by an aussie mom of a dyslexic child...