Image by Coal and Ice via FlickrFor some time now, I've dialed back my resistance of our school's administration. I've rooted for the inter-local and wished for its success. That inter-local isn't even here yet, and the disappointment seems inevitable. A wise woman once said to me in a training that your child's education doesn't have to be a Lexus, but the state has to give you a Ford at least. Well, Darrel is kicking the tires on a jalopy and wondering where it all went wrong.
There were big plans for ABA training. It never happened. Neither did TEAACH or anything else for that matter. We got a parent on the Autism Team for the township, and I was so excited. Oh, what we could do! Nothing. That's what we could do. Nothing happened.
We have so much technology, so many programs, and so much we could use to make our kids functional. It wasn't a matter of cost. I know that will be the excuse given, but it's just that, an excuse. Implementing policy in the classroom usually doesn't cost a dime. The price is will-power. Orientation training for teacher's assistants who do the lion's share of the work, that takes time, but it's worth it. Autism training which is mandated isn't even happening consistently. What does it all come down to? I have an answer, but it's not PC.
How the heck will we include the most severe students if we don't even give them comprehensive tools like sign language, PECS and behavioral training? The answer: we'll pretend we did. We put them out in a self-contained classroom or a general education setting and pray for divine intervention. One day, we'll be right back in that CCC discussing suspensions and change of placement. It's not good enough. Sorry, Indiana, but you are flunking out in special education.
Then to hear things from so many professionals and even advocates like "it's happening everywhere!" as if that excuses our failure to make it stop happening. Again and again, I've seen what true intervention can do for a child. I'm sick of being told it takes money! No, it really doesn't. It takes effort! If I can do it at home, you can do it at school for free.