So what does this look like?
Well for one, this can one of the worst nightmares of your life, or can flow quite smoothly. And depends on a number of scenarios, your school administrator (principal), your school district, unions, and how proactive your parents group is in your area.
Instead of focusing on what doesn’t work, and the current nightmarish situations in many schools, focus on school districts that are successfully doing pro-active programming. Keep in mind precedents have been set so use them to set up a unique program in your own district–your own school.
In a public school to have successful program it begins with administrators (principals) who know how to think outside the box and see the genuine benefits to all students. And remember too, what’s laid out below the school district is not footing the bill; parents are coughing up the money from their own pocket.
Your child’s in an authentic autism program, run by a qualified consultant with a proven track record, not some pseudo therapy or copycat therapy where parents have dished out their life savings with little to no results. I’m talking about credible therapy where your child has made milestones in their progress. You’ve established with your school district this genuine therapy, hopefully with a group of parents who are doing the same. What happens next is this:
1. Your qualified consultant is allowed into the school to put together program/curriculum/training for the EA working with your child and the teacher. And remember the parent is footing this bill, not the school. (I will keep harping on this as many parents get quite upset by this uniqueness believing it will somehow take from their child, that its unfair and money is taken from the school district to benefit just your child).
2. The Educational Assistant hired in the school to work with your child, must be part of the home team with a required number of hours to ensure consistency between school and home.
3. Your consultant sets goals, creates programs for academics, socialization, peer interaction, language and behavior. She establishes strategies, and changes what doesn’t work. These kids work hard, but these kids make real progress with the right therapy. And remember this Educational Assistant (EA) who this parent has trained with money from their pocket, is also helping other children in the class who fall between the cracks. Why? Because of all the unique training this parent has paid for.
4. At all times the parent is in the loop. Knows their child’s progress. As the EA is keeping data/records shared with the consultant, school, and parent.
Does this not sound like a win win situation for everyone?