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    #249503 - 02/02/22 07:01 PM Re: Looking for advice on how to proceed... [Re: sj4iy]
    indigo Offline
    Member

    Registered: 04/27/13
    Posts: 4957
    A few thoughts came to mind as I read your post.

    - You earlier mentioned that he had not memorized his multiplication tables. Have you worked with him at home to support his learning?
    - - If he is visual, you could help him "see" and "picture" the multiplication.
    - - If he is auditory, there are songs for multiplication, that once memorized may easily come to mind when he needs to recite multiplication tables.
    - - As an alternative, there is always classic "drill," the no-fun, timed tests from years gone by. wink Drill sheets can now be found online.

    - If you believe your child may need or benefit from tests for learning disabilities or dyspraxia, you may want to focus on arranging for that, prior to changing schools.

    - Are classes in his areas of interest and ability currently available from Northwestern CTD and/or JHU CTY?

    - Are you able to home school?

    - Regarding being bullied and an outcast - - Are you able to invite any child(ren) over to play, or plan a meet-up with one or more families at a local spot such as a pizza place, museum, zoo, or park? Are there any other groups of children he could meet (city recreation department, sports team, volunteer activity at pet shelter, church, etc)

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    #249506 - 02/05/22 02:58 PM Re: Looking for advice on how to proceed... [Re: indigo]
    sj4iy Offline
    Junior Member

    Registered: 10/30/20
    Posts: 23
    Originally Posted By: indigo
    A few thoughts came to mind as I read your post.

    - You earlier mentioned that he had not memorized his multiplication tables. Have you worked with him at home to support his learning?
    - - If he is visual, you could help him "see" and "picture" the multiplication.
    - - If he is auditory, there are songs for multiplication, that once memorized may easily come to mind when he needs to recite multiplication tables.
    - - As an alternative, there is always classic "drill," the no-fun, timed tests from years gone by. wink Drill sheets can now be found online.

    - If you believe your child may need or benefit from tests for learning disabilities or dyspraxia, you may want to focus on arranging for that, prior to changing schools.

    - Are classes in his areas of interest and ability currently available from Northwestern CTD and/or JHU CTY?

    - Are you able to home school?

    - Regarding being bullied and an outcast - - Are you able to invite any child(ren) over to play, or plan a meet-up with one or more families at a local spot such as a pizza place, museum, zoo, or park? Are there any other groups of children he could meet (city recreation department, sports team, volunteer activity at pet shelter, church, etc)



    1. I meant that his teacher said that he couldn't be gifted if he didn't have his multiplications memorized. He knows them without memorization since he was 3yo.

    2. He is very visually oriented. The school knows, and we used many tools that are visual. He is not good with auditory instructions.

    3. I have focused on finding an answer for my son over the past 8 months. It's surprisingly difficult to find a private psychologist/psychiatrist who diagnoses learning disabilities in my area. Most people simply treat it. There is one person who can do it that I've found, but she wouldn't take the case until he was fully vaccinated. I recontacted her recently, and I can't do anything until June. And nothing is in network, so I'm paying $2500 out of pocket to do this.

    4. I'm attempting to get him into another school. Timing is timing. Homeschooling is not an option right now.

    5. Covid is a major issue when it comes to play dates, sleep overs, etc. We don't go to church, and while we do museums and schools, he still wants a friend at school. That doesn't change. We try to make home life as fun as possible, but school is a different thing. We don't want to do another online class at CTY or CTD right now and interfere with school.

    I guess I'm looking for how do I go about an IEE or making the school change their decision. The school makes a 504 but they didn't even talk to his teachers about his writing struggles. I had to go over it. Now he's ignoring assignments and not caring. Getting bullied on top of that just makes everyone worse.

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    #249507 - 02/05/22 05:25 PM Re: Looking for advice on how to proceed... [Re: sj4iy]
    aeh Online   content
    Member

    Registered: 04/26/14
    Posts: 3990
    Were you ever able to request an IEE in writing? And if so, what was the school's response? To recap/expand from my earlier comments re: IEE, some of the points to consider raising would include:

    1. defective evaluation in the area of written expression. As the examiner was unable to obtain a normative assessment in all aspects of the suspected disability area of written expression, the district's finding of no disability in this area is not data-driven. Notably, they also ignored a writing score that was below average (Alphabet Writing Fluency), and one that was even lower in the below average range, bordering on low (Sentence Building). If they claim that the assessment was adequate, then these low scores should have been addressed with more seriousness in the eligibility discussion.

    2. defective (nearly non-existent) assessment in areas of suspected disability that were suggested during the evaluation process, in behavior and self-regulation (executive functions). The behavior described as a meltdown when presented with an extended writing task was portrayed by the district as having sufficient clinical significance that they drew the conclusion that his writing performance deficits were purely behavioral in nature. Given the intensity of the resistance, that is a clear indication that further evaluation efforts should have been directed toward identifying any possible disabilities related to behavior, such as self-regulation or sensory-motor triggers.

    3. defective (absent) evaluation in areas of suspected disability related to dysgraphia (which was part of the referral question), as an occupational therapy evaluation was not conducted, despite normative and clinical data suggesting fine-motor concerns (PSI significantly weaker than other cognitive measures, below average AWF, extreme emotional/behavioral response to a lengthy complex fine-motor task (Essay Composition)).

    4. As the district has already demonstrated and admitted that they are unable to complete an effective comprehensive evaluation, the requested remedy would be a comprehensive neuropsychological evaluation at district expense, including assessments in expressive language, written expression, executive functions, and emotional-behavioral areas, and an occupational therapy evaluation, including fine-motor and sensory processing. (Note: they explictly acknowledged that they were unable to complete a valid evaluation of his written expression skills by claiming that the low scores and refused subtests were underestimates of his skills in those areas, even though they are consistent with his classroom performance.)
    _________________________
    ...pronounced like the long vowel and first letter of the alphabet...

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    #249530 - 02/20/22 04:22 PM Re: Looking for advice on how to proceed... [Re: aeh]
    sj4iy Offline
    Junior Member

    Registered: 10/30/20
    Posts: 23
    Originally Posted By: aeh
    Were you ever able to request an IEE in writing? And if so, what was the school's response? To recap/expand from my earlier comments re: IEE, some of the points to consider raising would include:

    1. defective evaluation in the area of written expression. As the examiner was unable to obtain a normative assessment in all aspects of the suspected disability area of written expression, the district's finding of no disability in this area is not data-driven. Notably, they also ignored a writing score that was below average (Alphabet Writing Fluency), and one that was even lower in the below average range, bordering on low (Sentence Building). If they claim that the assessment was adequate, then these low scores should have been addressed with more seriousness in the eligibility discussion.

    2. defective (nearly non-existent) assessment in areas of suspected disability that were suggested during the evaluation process, in behavior and self-regulation (executive functions). The behavior described as a meltdown when presented with an extended writing task was portrayed by the district as having sufficient clinical significance that they drew the conclusion that his writing performance deficits were purely behavioral in nature. Given the intensity of the resistance, that is a clear indication that further evaluation efforts should have been directed toward identifying any possible disabilities related to behavior, such as self-regulation or sensory-motor triggers.

    3. defective (absent) evaluation in areas of suspected disability related to dysgraphia (which was part of the referral question), as an occupational therapy evaluation was not conducted, despite normative and clinical data suggesting fine-motor concerns (PSI significantly weaker than other cognitive measures, below average AWF, extreme emotional/behavioral response to a lengthy complex fine-motor task (Essay Composition)).

    4. As the district has already demonstrated and admitted that they are unable to complete an effective comprehensive evaluation, the requested remedy would be a comprehensive neuropsychological evaluation at district expense, including assessments in expressive language, written expression, executive functions, and emotional-behavioral areas, and an occupational therapy evaluation, including fine-motor and sensory processing. (Note: they explictly acknowledged that they were unable to complete a valid evaluation of his written expression skills by claiming that the low scores and refused subtests were underestimates of his skills in those areas, even though they are consistent with his classroom performance.)


    Sorry it took so long to respond, there were some things I was waiting on.

    1. We have not requested an IEE yet because we are scheduled with a psychologist who tests for learning disabilities and also tests for giftedness. We will meet with her in May and see what she says first. She told us that she wants to look at the report the school originally did and give her opinion on that, as well. It was give us ammunition in our fight for accommodations.

    2. We were also waiting to see the results of the charter school lottery we signed up for. He did not get in. We are looking at tutoring to give him some kind of enrichment while we are waiting for the new assessment.

    3. The school is not implementing the 504 that he has right now. I cannot find any information about what to do about that.

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    #249531 - 02/20/22 06:49 PM Re: Looking for advice on how to proceed... [Re: sj4iy]
    aeh Online   content
    Member

    Registered: 04/26/14
    Posts: 3990
    So the thought in requesting an IEE is partly that -- depending on how IEEs work in your district/state -- you may be able to get a voucher from the district that pays for the eval that you are discussing with the psych in May. When you talk to her, that should probably be part of the conversation.

    I am sorry the school lottery did not work out, and even more sad for you that his 504 is not being implemented appropriately. It is a legal document generated under federal law, and expressly relates to discrimination against students with disabilities. I am not normally quick to suggest litigation or related strategies...and this move would likely torpedo any hope of working collaboratively with the school (but given what you've described so far, perhaps it's past being a factor), but you should know that failure to implement a 504 plan can result in complaints to OCR (Office of Civil Rights). If OCR decides to investigate, they pretty much have a free hand to turn over any rock they feel like, including in areas not expressly named in the original complaint. So schools and districts -really- don't like OCR investigations. If this is a direction you might consider, it would be helpful to consult with a special education attorney, who should also have other helpful thoughts on how to increase the likelihood of 504 compliance (perhaps less drastic ones). Your upcoming psych consult might know some resources, since often people in her position get pulled in as expert witnesses.
    _________________________
    ...pronounced like the long vowel and first letter of the alphabet...

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    #249532 - 02/21/22 02:44 PM Re: Looking for advice on how to proceed... [Re: aeh]
    sj4iy Offline
    Junior Member

    Registered: 10/30/20
    Posts: 23
    Thanks for the information. We have considered talking to a lawyer about the 504, as well. My hope is that the outside evaluations and information can put pressure on the school accommodate him more. We also thought the same, that it was a last ditch effort because it will make negotiating with the school from now on nearly impossible. I don't want to sue them, of course, but he needs help, educationally and socially.

    The psychologist we have an appointment with did mention that she has experience with education lawsuits, so it's nice to know that someone has that experience.

    In a bit of surprising news, I contacted the people at PAGE (pennsylvania association for gifted eduation) a couple of days ago and to my surprise, they quickly got back to me. They even set up a zoom meeting with a gifted education director in PA for the day after tomorrow. So this person might help me figure out what to do next and give me some information. I'm honestly surprised they are being so helpful.

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    #249534 - 02/21/22 05:31 PM Re: Looking for advice on how to proceed... [Re: sj4iy]
    aeh Online   content
    Member

    Registered: 04/26/14
    Posts: 3990
    Oh, I do hope that this new resource turns out to be helpful! Nice to hear that someone was responsive.
    _________________________
    ...pronounced like the long vowel and first letter of the alphabet...

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    #249700 - 04/27/22 03:30 PM Re: Looking for advice on how to proceed... [Re: sj4iy]
    sj4iy Offline
    Junior Member

    Registered: 10/30/20
    Posts: 23
    Another update, since some things have changed. I thought I'd come back and let you know what's going on since everyone has been so helpful here:

    1. He has started pulling hair. He does it more at school and the reason he gives: he's bored. His grades are starting to go down and his enthusiasm about school is very low at this point. It's very worrying and we are working on helping him with his therapist and psychologist.

    2. We decided on putting him in Sylvan for enrichment tutoring. He's been there for a month and is really enjoying it. They tested him and found that he's on an 8th grade level (he's in 4th grade), and they are working on knowledge gaps. I talked to the director today and she said that they could get him some noise canceling headphones to help him concentrate (because it can get pretty loud in the center during that time slot). The tutor is also in contact with his math teacher.

    3. The Director from PAGE gave me some really good information that we intend to take to the school district over the summer or next school year, along with his tutoring information and the private therapist assessment that is coming up (for learning disabilities). We are hoping this helps in our favor this time around, but I don't have my hopes up. I'm glad that he's getting some enrichment through tutoring, and we plan to keep going with it and maybe even add more days as we go through it.

    Thanks for reading. I appreciate any and all advice.

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    #249702 - 04/27/22 06:17 PM Re: Looking for advice on how to proceed... [Re: sj4iy]
    indigo Offline
    Member

    Registered: 04/27/13
    Posts: 4957
    Observing certain attitudes/behaviors may signal that a change is needed and may be overdue.
    1) http://giftedissues.davidsongifted.org/B...html#Post174817
    2) http://giftedissues.davidsongifted.org/B...html#Post230029
    3) http://giftedissues.davidsongifted.org/B...html#Post241385

    The hair-pulling may now be a child's imperfect coping mechanism, attempting to deal with the deep stress of feeling trapped and helpless as his hopes, brain cells, and natural curiosity die off at the hands of the school system which does not meet his academic needs. Can the child be provided with some semblance of control/influence over his learning environment, with academic challenge and support based on his ability and readiness? Unfortunately, if the maladaptive behavior is not quickly replaced with a different form of fidgeting which does not result in self-harm, it may become an ingrained pattern (diagnosed as trichotillomania, a mental disorder).

    Meanwhile, it is great that the child receives challenge/support/enrichment outside of the classroom. Although it falls far short of the challenge/support the child should be receiving throughout the school day, it shows the child that you understand and care about his academic needs, and that he can talk to you about his unsatisfying/boring school day experiences.

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    #249703 - 04/27/22 09:59 PM Re: Looking for advice on how to proceed... [Re: indigo]
    sj4iy Offline
    Junior Member

    Registered: 10/30/20
    Posts: 23
    1. I absolutely agree about change. We have been discussing the possibility of homeschooling next year if nothing gets changed, at least until we can find another school for him to go to.

    2. My daughter wants to go to an art charter school the year after next. If that happens, we will have more freedom to move to a district that is more accommodating. That is, if he doesn't get into a charter school of our choice first.

    3. I have had trichotillomania for most of my life. It started from anxiety and depression, and now it is simply a habit. We are hoping that since it started so recently, agressive therapy now will help my son to not have it become a habit.

    4. We are waiting on two assessments: one for the learning disability and another to address the trichotillomania. Unfortunately, nothing moves quickly, so we are doing our best with redirection and finding ways for him to feel satisified in alternative ways.

    5. Unfortunately, almost all of the enrichment he's had in his life has come from outside sources and never in school. The school has no academic clubs or extracurricular enrichment activities.

    I definitely appreciate the information, especially from the other threads. It was really informative reading through them. I talked to the sylvan director about finding ways of making the experience more tailored to his specific needs and she was very enthusiastic about it.

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