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Old 12-30-2011, 10:54 PM   #16
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I definitely believe that my daughter is capable of a lot and frankly she tests quite high for IQ and does very well academically. If the school ever tried to pull her from mainstream classes for anything but advanced placement then I'd be fighting. I did agree to have her NOT put in our district's equivalent of gifted classes even though she tested slightly over the cutoff needed because she really didn't need the added stress of the extra work when she was also dealing with all her ASD issues but that's the only type of holding her back academically I would ever agree to. Her ASD actually makes her very strong in most academic areas. She just needed goals in her IEP involving pragmatic language and executive functioning skills in order to acheive her full abilities in a couple subjects where these skills are becoming more and more necessary as she gets older. Many ASD kids can be very high acheivers academically. If 99% of kids with ASDs are incapable of earning regular high school diplomas then I'd say the district is failing them in earlier years where they should be learning the skills necessary to function in the classroom and then further in life beyond school. Yes many ASD kids are not high functioning, but more than 1% should be able to get a regular high school diploma. Something is seriously wrong with this.

Yes I do know that my child will never do some things but that's true of any child since everybody has strengths and weaknesses. My child will do anything she chooses to set her mind to. We're just very open and aware of what areas include greater hurdles and we're also aware of what impacts there could be on others.

I was not suggesting imposing limitations. I was saying take personal responsibility, especially in areas that can impact those around the child. That is very different.
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Old 12-30-2011, 11:02 PM   #17
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As far as the other kids having a right to being safe, I agree. What I think the argument here is isolated incidents are one thing, a child that repeatedly hits and bites and kicks (with issues or without) should be removed from the setting because for whatever reason, they can't handle it and are causing harm.

Flame away here but it's not fair for a parent to put a child with issues when they know the kid will lash out. Again, its the difference between isolated occurances and habitual behavior.
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Old 12-30-2011, 11:06 PM   #18
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The problem with special ed is walking that tight rope of realistic vs. high/low expectations.

I used to teach kids with intellectual disabilities. Some had other emotional or behavioral problems as well. I expected my class to behave. I hated it when another teacher would excuse a misbehavior such as hitting with the phrase, "They're MR kids, what do you expect?" I expected them to behave, and many of them did. It was not without a lot of effort, but I was told by many subs that I had one of the best behaved classes. Not that they were perfect, far from it.

On the other hand, I had to make sure my expectations were realistic. I'm sorry, a kid with a 40 IQ is probably never going to go get their PhD or run a Fortune 500 company. There is nothing wrong with that. My expectations for my students is that they would be functional readers. They would have enough reading and math skills to hold down a job, possibly in a supported or sheltered environment if need be. Some would be able to live independently, some would need assistance from a family member or organization. There is nothin wrong with that. I absolutely wanted to have high expectations for my students, but setting the bar to be unobtainable IMO, is just as bad as setting the bar too low. There has to be a balance.

As to the letter, that's a tough one. For the situation, it looks like overkill. This is not about the aunt not accepting the child, this is about her actions being unacceptable no matter what diagnoses or lack thereof a child has. And previous posters do have a point. I have had aggressive kids in my class. We had to take measures to make sure the other kids were safe. I a all for inclusion when it can be done properly. I also realize accidents can happen. But if a child is continually violent in a situation, that needs to be looked at. And yes, that might mean cannot participate in an activity. If I have a student who continually has meltdowns in the cafeteria for instance, I will have that student eat in the classroom. I do not put them in the environment they cannot handle and where they could be dangerous. We try to work our way up there, but I am responsible for keeping that student and the other kids safe as well. There has to be a balance between the rights of the child and safety of others. I'm not saying that the child should be isolated completely, but steps do need to be taken to ensure safety of other people as well.
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Old 12-30-2011, 11:11 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by clanmcculloch View Post
I definitely believe that my daughter is capable of a lot and frankly she tests quite high for IQ and does very well academically. If the school ever tried to pull her from mainstream classes for anything but advanced placement then I'd be fighting. I did agree to have her NOT put in our district's equivalent of gifted classes even though she tested slightly over the cutoff needed because she really didn't need the added stress of the extra work when she was also dealing with all her ASD issues but that's the only type of holding her back academically I would ever agree to. Her ASD actually makes her very strong in most academic areas. She just needed goals in her IEP involving pragmatic language and executive functioning skills in order to acheive her full abilities in a couple subjects where these skills are becoming more and more necessary as she gets older. Many ASD kids can be very high acheivers academically. If 99% of kids with ASDs are incapable of earning regular high school diplomas then I'd say the district is failing them in earlier years where they should be learning the skills necessary to function in the classroom and then further in life beyond school. Yes many ASD kids are not high functioning, but more than 1% should be able to get a regular high school diploma. Something is seriously wrong with this.

Yes I do know that my child will never do some things but that's true of any child since everybody has strengths and weaknesses. My child will do anything she chooses to set her mind to. We're just very open and aware of what areas include greater hurdles and we're also aware of what impacts there could be on others.

I was not suggesting imposing limitations. I was saying take personal responsibility, especially in areas that can impact those around the child. That is very different.
I absolutely agree with you when it comes to high functioning autism. But I have known many kids who are not nearly as high functioning as the daughter you describe. Austism does have a high comorbidity rate with other disabilities, including Down Syndrome. The kids I've known that were more severe were so unable to get out of their own heads so to speak, that things like reading and math were next to impossible. Not that their teachers didn't try, but they truly would not have succeeded if placed in regular education. Believe me, it takes a lot to get kids into our self contained autism program. Most higher functioning kids are not, they are mainstreamed. But the ones there, they really do need it. I love that your daughter is so high functioning, but you cannot paint all kids with autism with the same brush. Although I will agree that if 99% of kids are not getting a regular diploma, that is far too high.
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Old 12-30-2011, 11:42 PM   #20
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Ah, the curse of low expectations. And you work in this field? That's a sad commentary.

I'm a parent who refused to listen to the school's "expert" opinion. Good for my child that I did....school was flat-out WRONG, and they see that now. But if I'd thrown my kid under the bus 5 years ago, he'd be so far behind now he'd never catch up.
You are taking my words out of context I didn't say all fail & I don't have or give a curse of low expectations at all. If you read what I said, you don't want them to fail. You want to build up their
confidence & self esteem. You find what they are good at & build on it. Is that is the curse of low expectations? There are some who cannot accept, it doesn't have to be school. The example of a child who cannot handle team sports, yet a parent will continue to sign them up, are they accepting the fact their child can't handle it? I understand you don't "give up", but somethings you have to learn to accept if you see no improvement over time.
Not every child will be able to do all they try to do, be it in school or sports. This goes for any child, not just Special Needs. Babe Ruth didn't play Basketball & Football along with Baseball did he? Albert Einstein wasn't a Soccer player? Frank Sinatra didn't sing Rock n Roll get the picture?
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Old 12-31-2011, 07:52 AM   #21
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I hope you aren't getting the 1% graduation % from my post. If so I m sorry for the confusion. This % is from the students who were removed from the ESE track during their high school years. To graduate with a standard diploma, you must have 24 credits (some in particular Math & English). If the student has say only 12 & he is going into 12th grade, he can still possibly manage to obtain what is needed to graduate remaining on an ESE track & then go onto a trade school. If the parent switches them late in high school, it s next to impossible for them to obtain the credits they need to graduate the year they were originally slated to. The parents are literally setting their child up for failure. They are not capable of earning the credits needed in the time frame that they have to earn them, NOT that the student is very low functioning and incapable of passing everything. If they were that low they would have been in life skills classes. You can't jump from life skills to gen ed in high school.

I am sorry if there was any confusion from my post. ESE is also a broad term, it covers all exceptional student education (gifted too just the opposite end), it doesn't only pertain to students who are Autistic... And I do know you can have a child who is gifted & Autistic.....

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Just as my DS, gifted & Bipolar who graduated at the top 15% of his class, from all honors. He had a scholarship. Played Competitive Baseball, and his team even won Nationals @ Disney. We thought everything as great & he was ok till he tried to kill himself & was on life support for 3 days. Long story short, he lost his scholarship, stopped taking his meds' got caught up with drugs (self medication), in & out of rehab, arrested, sent away. Now home at 25 fighting demons inside of himself as well as around him. Still won't take any meds, feels he doesn't need them, so the roller coaster will continue.
Oh, if you live in the State of FL & try to have your adult child Baker Acted, the police where I live arrest instead. The reason for this part of my post, to show you :
1. When you think things are good, don't let your guard down.
2. They become adults & can decide on their own to continue on meds (if they take them)
3. The law will not always see them for who they are, and arrest instead of help when they are adults.
4. When they break the law, they are treated like anyone else. Mommy cannot keep them from being prosecuted. You can't fight the legal system, the way you fight the school system.
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Old 01-01-2012, 09:43 AM   #22
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I hope you aren't getting the 1% graduation % from my post. If so I m sorry for the confusion. This % is from the students who were removed from the ESE track during their high school years. To graduate with a standard diploma, you must have 24 credits (some in particular Math & English). If the student has say only 12 & he is going into 12th grade, he can still possibly manage to obtain what is needed to graduate remaining on an ESE track & then go onto a trade school. If the parent switches them late in high school, it s next to impossible for them to obtain the credits they need to graduate the year they were originally slated to. The parents are literally setting their child up for failure. They are not capable of earning the credits needed in the time frame that they have to earn them, NOT that the student is very low functioning and incapable of passing everything. If they were that low they would have been in life skills classes. You can't jump from life skills to gen ed in high school.

I am sorry if there was any confusion from my post. ESE is also a broad term, it covers all exceptional student education (gifted too just the opposite end), it doesn't only pertain to students who are Autistic... And I do know you can have a child who is gifted & Autistic.....

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Just as my DS, gifted & Bipolar who graduated at the top 15% of his class, from all honors. He had a scholarship. Played Competitive Baseball, and his team even won Nationals @ Disney. We thought everything as great & he was ok till he tried to kill himself & was on life support for 3 days. Long story short, he lost his scholarship, stopped taking his meds' got caught up with drugs (self medication), in & out of rehab, arrested, sent away. Now home at 25 fighting demons inside of himself as well as around him. Still won't take any meds, feels he doesn't need them, so the roller coaster will continue.
Oh, if you live in the State of FL & try to have your adult child Baker Acted, the police where I live arrest instead. The reason for this part of my post, to show you :
1. When you think things are good, don't let your guard down.
2. They become adults & can decide on their own to continue on meds (if they take them)
3. The law will not always see them for who they are, and arrest instead of help when they are adults.
4. When they break the law, they are treated like anyone else. Mommy cannot keep them from being prosecuted. You can't fight the legal system, the way you fight the school system.
And what's this other diploma? So often, anything but a standard dimploma is worthless anyway. Can it get you into college, jobs?

My mother was Baker Acted in Florida. She was not arrested. She was committed to a treatment, and in fact it was a turning point for her.
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Old 01-03-2012, 09:23 PM   #23
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And what's this other diploma? So often, anything but a standard dimploma is worthless anyway. Can it get you into college, jobs?

My mother was Baker Acted in Florida. She was not arrested. She was committed to a treatment, and in fact it was a turning point for her.
The other diploma is called "certificate of completion" You can go to a trade school but not college. As far as a job, yes, you check the box for completed high school. This is also the diploma that the students who were on the standard gen ed track, but were unable to pass FCAT rec'd as well. It was that no matter how high your GPA was, if you did not pass FCAT by graduation year, you did not get your standard diploma.

As far as Baker Acting, I have tried 5 times with my son. Twice the did it, he was under 18. The other 3 times, they did not. Two of them led to him being arrested when I tried to show he was a danger to himself or others. The other the PD refused saying he was only "high" and understood enough to tell them who he was. The ER doc had to agree at that point even though he was taken into the ER via ambulance semi-concious from a drug over dose. His stomach was pumped, IV's were in him .....their reason, he was an adult and a drug OD is not a reason to Baker Act maybe so if they aren't Bipolar.

In my City, my PD do not like doing the paper work that is involved in Baker Acting. In my jail, the guards killed a mentally ill inmate with a heart problem with pepper spray. There have been several mentally ill people shot to death by the Sheriff's. Lee County... Google it if you doubt what I say. Yes, they will Baker Act, if there is no choice. I don't see why you feel the need to disbelieve my posting, or be offended by it. I don't mean to offend anyone here. It just seems there are many parents with young children on here & not thinking of long term and sometimes harsh reality of having their child thrown into society as an "adult".

I am very happy for your mother, that is awesome. If you don't mind me asking, how old was she when this occured? Was she a young adult or just "grown". I am asking this because of my son. We are still waiting for him to even accept the fact he needs help. He still really can't see it as an adult. He was on Lithium @ 21 after several others that were tried & failed over the years. He'll take for a while then he's "cured" ..then after a while his self medicating will start. He's home since Sept & he has already showed signs of drinking again. I am just afraid the illegal drugs will be next. He is a Rapid Cycler (mostly Manic) Bipolar wth ODD
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Old 01-05-2012, 08:58 AM   #24
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It would make sense to me then that parents would want their child to attain a diploma that would let them go on with their studies. The certificate of completion cuts off a lot of opportunities for a lot of kids.

My mom was Baker Acted in Hillsborough County, but this would have been the mid 1990s. She stayed about a month in a mental health facility, and that's when she truly started to understand the depths of her bi-polar illness, taking her meds, etc.

I'm sure it's much different now...so much has changed in 20 years, and Florida seems to want to provide less services than ever. It's also so difficult if your child is self-medicating with drugs....my mother was not, and she was in her 60s, so she was just a more sympathetic character to deal with.

It's too bad more police officers don't grasp that many of the people they deal with are mentally ill first, not career criminals! I'm sorry for all you are going through with your son.
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Old 01-06-2012, 06:09 PM   #25
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It would make sense to me then that parents would want their child to attain a diploma that would let them go on with their studies. The certificate of completion cuts off a lot of opportunities for a lot of kids.

My mom was Baker Acted in Hillsborough County, but this would have been the mid 1990s. She stayed about a month in a mental health facility, and that's when she truly started to understand the depths of her bi-polar illness, taking her meds, etc.

I'm sure it's much different now...so much has changed in 20 years, and Florida seems to want to provide less services than ever. It's also so difficult if your child is self-medicating with drugs....my mother was not, and she was in her 60s, so she was just a more sympathetic character to deal with.

It's too bad more police officers don't grasp that many of the people they deal with are mentally ill first, not career criminals! I'm sorry for all you are going through with your son.
You hit the nail on the head.. to an officer, a 60 year old is more sympathetic than a young "punk" in their eyes.. In their eyes, he is a junkie, not someone who is mentally ill. For parents with children who have violent rages, they will look at them as punks who are "violent criminals" not one in a rage due to not taking meds.

My friend's DS is 24, he suffers from Schizophrenia. He actually is a friend of my DS too. He just recently went off his meds (after being in patient for over a year!) and attacked his dad with a knife. He was arrested for Domestic Violence, & Aggvav Battery. His bond is $75,000. Chances are he will be sent to prison. This is the second time he has been charged with Domestic Violence. He did hurt his dad pretty bad. His Dad is in ICU and has been there since 12/20 It is a no one situation all around. This guy doesn't belong behind bars in my opinion, he needs help, he needs to be in a hospital where he will get the help he needs and remain there. He doesn't belong in a prison mental hospital not getting help. That is the way our state is, I cannot speak for other states.. You are so correct, our State has no funding for the mentally ill, they are always cutting it as if they don't want to help them. They aren't ill, they are all criminals so just lock them up when they become of age. That is the feeling I get from sunny FLA

I do see your point about the diploma, I really do. You have to look at the big picture though. With the certificate of completion, your child can still go to a vocational trade school. They can become an electrician, a plumber, a mechanic etc... they just cannot go onto college. Some parents want their child to have a standard diploma no matter what. That sometimes hurts the child. They may not graduate with their class. That will lower their self esteem, who wants to be 20 graduating high school. Even if the do manage to get it, it will be hard for them in college anyway. Not everyone is college material. We need those trades. Without them, our economy won't survive.. Don't look down on those jobs.. Some of them make better money than those who get a college education.... Up until this past year, if the student didn't pass FCRAP opps, I mean FCAT, they would get that certificate of completion instead of the standard diploma anyway.. and even some of those with high GPA's and all honors have been known to freeze on FCAT and fail each and every time.
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Old 01-10-2012, 11:35 AM   #26
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I am very happy for your mother, that is awesome. If you don't mind me asking, how old was she when this occured? Was she a young adult or just "grown". I am asking this because of my son. We are still waiting for him to even accept the fact he needs help. He still really can't see it as an adult. He was on Lithium @ 21 after several others that were tried & failed over the years. He'll take for a while then he's "cured" ..then after a while his self medicating will start. He's home since Sept & he has already showed signs of drinking again. I am just afraid the illegal drugs will be next. He is a Rapid Cycler (mostly Manic) Bipolar wth ODD
I can feel the pain behind your words. My DS25 also has bipolar 1 and refuses to be medicated. Although he has not had any serious run-ins with the law (yet) we have had many MANY difficulties with him, including two hospitalizations. Like your son, mine also self-medicates, with alcohol. I worry about him a lot, but I find that i have to keep pretty strict boundaries with him. Love him to pieces, but my son is a MASTER manipulator. You might want to join us over at Depression and Bipolar Support Alliance: ...www.dbsalliance.org (if you haven't already been there, that is.)_
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Old 01-16-2012, 12:48 PM   #27
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It's tempting, but no, don't send that letter. Letters like this are seen as self-righteous lectures by those who feel that they have been wrongly maligned. Sending that letter is almost guaranteed to cause a family rift, and it won't be pretty.

The only "letter" that should be sent is a written apology from the child to the aunt, explaining that he is sorry that he lost control and that he apologizes for disrepecting her. Then the parent should discuss the child's condition with the aunt in person and explain why he has limits that neurotypical children do not have, and how she unwittingly provoked the reaction that she got. The parent should be sympathetic to how the aunt felt, because it IS infuriating to be insulted by a child.

Yes, I know that the adult shouldn't have teased him, and that his reaction was natural for him, but even ASD kids need to learn that disrepecting adults is simply not acceptable, and ALWAYS requires an apology, even if the adult provoked the reaction. (And yes, I've got an ASD kid.)
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Old 01-16-2012, 03:15 PM   #28
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It's tempting, but no, don't send that letter. Letters like this are seen as self-righteous lectures by those who feel that they have been wrongly maligned. Sending that letter is almost guaranteed to cause a family rift, and it won't be pretty.

The only "letter" that should be sent is a written apology from the child to the aunt, explaining that he is sorry that he lost control and that he apologizes for disrepecting her. Then the parent should discuss the child's condition with the aunt in person and explain why he has limits that neurotypical children do not have, and how she unwittingly provoked the reaction that she got. The parent should be sympathetic to how the aunt felt, because it IS infuriating to be insulted by a child.

Yes, I know that the adult shouldn't have teased him, and that his reaction was natural for him, but even ASD kids need to learn that disrepecting adults is simply not acceptable, and ALWAYS requires an apology, even if the adult provoked the reaction. (And yes, I've got an ASD kid.)
This wasn't MY letter, but my daughter's. The aunt (and the whole family) know the child's condition. Their answer is "if you'd just beat his butt" he wouldn't act that way. The child did write an apology the next day because that is one of the things my daughter does with him....discuss the situation and how he could have handled it in a different way + he apologizes.

Unfortunately, the teasing isn't uncommon from this adult. The fact that she had been drinking probably played a part in her goading him on and refusing to listen to his parents when they told her to not touch him (this escalates his meltdown.) My daughter just hit that point of frustration when she decided that writing things down so they couldn't say "we didn't know" was in order.

This took place several weeks ago and the episode is closed now.
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Old 03-10-2012, 07:40 PM   #29
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I realize that this is an older thread, but I have to respond to the PP who said the child needed to apologize to the aunt... ABSOLUTELY NOT! If I have the facts straight, the aunt purposefully, and with full understanding of her nephew's challenges, and possibly while under the influence of alcohol, chose to tease and push at him until he lost control. She then prevented his parents from trying to fix the mess she created. This makes her an abusive bully. She owes the child and his parents an apology, not the other way around. Don't blame the victim!
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