Friday, January 6, 2012
The ULTIMATE progress...
Progress is sweet, but it's never better than when others notice...and DOCUMENT...it. Nathan had made MODEST improvements with the INTENSIVE efforts of the school district in the past, before we medically/nutritionally intervened. But it felt like we were trying to sprint uphill, huffing and puffing, feeling the pull of every muscle straining to get the least bit of progress. We THINK we can...we THINK we can...that was our mantra.
After making progress, we always worried about keeping and maintaining. Nathan has a history of losing progress he's made if he's not kept in a classroom environment. We try to keep up at home, but with 3 kids, you can imagine...
After a year of regression in school, we came back to Kansas hungry for progress. We began a biomed protocol 5 months ago, and started with AC chelation 3 months ago; after this round of chelation, we will have completed 9 rounds. I got Nathan back into his old preschool program right before Thanksgiving, very nervous of how things would go, especially since the team here in Kansas decided to "throw out" the IEP we had written in ABQ. Our hours were getting cut in half compared to what we received in ABQ, but I also knew that the school district here in Kansas was much more progressive in using current research. The team in ABQ tried, to be sure, but I just didn't see much impressive stuff happening.
Among the goals on the IEP written recently was:
Goal 1: Within 36 instructional weeks, Nathan will follow a minimum of 4 classroom routines with visual and verbal prompts.
Goal 2: Within 36 instructional weeks, Nathan will complete 4 closed ended activities with mature motor patterns.
Goal 3: Within 36 instructional weeks, Nathan will imitate 5 actions with objects and 4 actions of others with verbal prompts.
Goal 4: Within 36 instructional weeks, Nathan will match 5 identical objects from a field of 2.
Goal 5: Within 36 instructional weeks, Nathan will follow 4 one step directions (which can include come here, sit, stop, give) in structured and unstructured settings.
Goal 6: Within 36 instructional weeks, Nathan will express his wants or needs (which could include words, pictures, or signs) to request at least 4 items in 4 or more areas.
Yesterday, we received our first progress report for these goals. I was dreadfully expecting the usual "Modest improvement noted" statement scattered all over the pages.
I was shocked. This report had no instances of "Modest improvement" at all. I saw "Goal is met" and "Progressing well" everywhere.
In fact, Nathan met and surpassed 2 out of 6 of his IEP goals. Goals 4 and 6, MET. Not only this, but he's close to meeting Goals 3 and 5, as well. Even Goals 1 and 2 noted "good progress".
The IEP was written on December 1st. Final data was taken on December 20th. In less than a month's time, after moving twice in one year, this boy who has a disorder stating that he has difficulty with changes and transitions has nearly shut out his IEP.
...and so, although I'm tired and have had to whip up a dose of chelator every 4 hours for the past couple of days and will be doing it for another couple of days, I'll do it again and again. If this is what progress takes, so be it! It's just soooooo worth it, in my book!