Just over a month ago we began the transition process for James to move from Early Childhood Intervention to the Preschool Program for Children with Disabilities (PPCD). ECI will end when James turns three, and he’ll be three in less than 2 months. Time truly goes so quickly. I am the luckiest Mommy in the world. I’m so thankful to have this time at home with him. There is no other way I’d rather spend my days than watching James as he grows into an amazing little boy and tries to figure out the world around him.
We had a big day in the transition process last week. I attended James’ first ARD meeting. ARD stands for Admission, Review, and Dismissal. This meeting was for James to be admitted into PPCD. Each year he’ll have a review of his plan and progress to see if the services from special education are still needed, leading up to the day that he’ll be dismissed from the special education program.
I had a really difficult time with James’ evaluation back in April, and was expecting his ARD meeting to be equally difficult for me. To my surprise, there were no tears. A very big part of getting through that meeting without tears had to do with the advice given to me by one of James’ amazing therapists; the advice to decline having an IQ test done on James.
A large part of the discussion during the ARD meeting centered on reviewing evaluation results and determining James’ eligibility for enrollment in PPCD. James was determined eligible due to his vision loss and due to the diagnosis of “severe asthma.” They did review the results of a developmental checklist they did on James, and his scores were very low, but there was no diagnosis of a cognitive impairment because there was no IQ test. It wasn’t until I was in the middle of this meeting that I realized the significance of not having an IQ test done. I was so relieved that they couldn’t make that diagnosis. He’s only two (almost three), lets give him a little time to see what kind of progress he can make before we put a label on him. We get to give him a chance now. Maybe it’s just delaying the inevitable, but if that’s the case so be it, delay it for a while. As a mom, I’m so thankful that I get to send my precious little guy off to school for the first time feeling hopeful at all the possibilities ahead for James. Expectations are high, you got this buddy!
Best of luck to you–I think you’re right to delay that. IQ tests are notoriously inaccurate and the best thing, for every child, is to meet them where they are and encourage them to grow in their interests and exploration. Childhood is for play and imagination and exploration and it is so exciting that he is going to enjoy preschool soon!
Thank you. I couldn’t agree more. I’m so excited for him. I know he will love it and even though I’ve only met his teacher once, she seems to be fantastic. Really good first impression. I think it’s going to be a good year.
So glad that this meeting was better and you feel peace with it. I’m believing James will suprise everyone with his growth in ……EVERYTHING!!!! Just as children do so many times! I know it will be a stressful time for you, sending him to school, we worry so much!!! No matter the age. But I must be honest……I’m worried about you!!!! Ha Ha!! (meant to be funny!!!!) Only because I remember so well the same thing….I went in circles, didn’t accomplish anything, was first in line to pick Nicole up from school……I was lost without her, I didn’t know how to handle it…..When my niece was 4 starting preschool, Nicole was 24 moving to Dallas….my sister cried leaving her daughter, I cried because Nicole was that much farther from me……But then again, if she would not have gone to Dallas, I wouldn’t be praying for your little boy!!!! Hugs and prayers!
I agree with you, I think he will surprise us all. I’m worried, but so excited for him. He loves other children so much. I just hope he can stay healthy enough at school to keep going. I’m sure it’s hard having Nicole away, but she is doing amazing things for children and their families. I know you’re so proud of her. I still pray for her and the situations she faces daily in the PICU. She is one awesome nurse!!