“My Story…” Monday: A – The Triennial

(You can catch up on A’s story right here: The Pregnancy, The Birth, The Infancy, The Quiet Toddler, Advocating, What He COULD Do, Just A Boy, The (Hard) Next Step, Making a Friend, The Autism Diagnosis, He Talks, Hyperlexia, Your Baby Can Read, Another Evaluation, A New Kind of Special Need, Linear Algebra)  
 
A. continued to receive Special Education services from the school.  His PDD-NOS diagnosis made it easy for us to make sure he was getting the therapies that benefitted him.  He also continued to meet with Dr. C. for extra enrichment once she had identified him as “gifted”.  Things were moving along well and we were pleased with what was happening in the school.

 

One very real perk of the preschool program that A. went through was the careful kindergarten teacher recommendation that was submitted by his preschool teacher.  We were absolutely blessed to not only have OUR opinion sought and heard, but also to have a wonderful professional who truly knew our son weigh in.  Miss Jenn recommended Mrs. S. and the school took her rec very seriously.  Mrs. S. was a perfect fit for kindergarten.

 

About mid-way through his kindergarten year, A. was turning six.  Before that occasion, the school needed to complete what is called a “triennial review.”    Essentially, this just means that it had been three years since all the “big” tests and evaluations had been done.  There were annual reviews and assessments, of course, but this was the big package– the whole nine yards.  And it all needed to be done again.  They asked our permission to do an IQ test and to involve an autism expert to further evaluate our son.

I signed several papers and gave my consent.  Through it all, all we’ve ever wanted for our son was what’s best.  We’ve tried not to be overly concerned about labels and, while not afraid to advocate, we’ve also worked hard to work WITH our school systems rather than against them.  For the triennial, we wanted the most complete assessment they could attain.  We wanted as complete a picture as they could get, based on both tests and reports from those who knew him best.

 

A couple of those “people who knew him best”?  Those would be us.  And our views and experiences with A. counted for a whole lot.  Too often, I hear parents lament that their voices don’t count– that what they think doesn’t matter.  I can honestly say I have not had that experience.  They asked for our feedback and we gave it to them.  We spent a good bit of time on it, as I think parents should, and did our best to be honest and thorough.

 

Most of this occurred during the week before Christmas break and I feared weeks would pass before we’d hear anything.  Since the annual review meeting was scheduled for January 4th, I was mostly correct.

 

But the school psychologist did call me.  She was very, very excited.

 

She had just calculated A’s IQ.

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