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Old 08-04-2015, 01:23 AM
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urchin_grey urchin_grey is offline
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Default Completely blown away by Bram's new school!

We attended open house for Bram's new school yesterday. I believe I shared our recent school woes here about him being transferred yet again due to grade level changes in the program he's in but here's a recap:

Long version:
Homeschooled for most of 1st grade, started at school #1 that Feb, then had to transfer to school #2 several weeks later.
Moved that summer but we found a new apartment specifically in the 2mi radius that would keep him at school #2. Huge mistake. lol
Continued at school #2 for 2nd grade.
Insert every issue imaginable. Near the end of 2nd grade, I demanded either a personal aid for Bram or we would return to homeschooling.
Basically, they didn't want to lose him but didn't want to pay for an aid either so for 3rd grade the district transferred him to school #3 and he entered the FMD (functional mental disability) program. He LOVED it and the year went very smoothly.
At the end of 3rd grade, I was informed that the FMD program at school #3 capped out at 3rd grade and Bram would be transferred back to school #1 for grades 4-6. School #1 is outside of town and there were at least 20 reasons I didn't want him there. But that was our only option to stay in FMD and Bram NEEDS to stay in FMD.

However, it was decided that due to my MIL's current health issues and inability to work, she, her parents, and my SIL would be moving into one big house together. We will be taking over MIL's house. This move puts us in the city school district which is completely separate from county schools. They receive some federal funding (IIRC) but for the most part they are funded by the city and aren't restricted by federal laws. I had been told they are amazing but I wasn't aware just HOW amazing until yesterday.

Short version:
We are moving and Bram is transferring from the county school district to our city's school district and it's a-freaking-mazing.

So anyway, back to the open house! I am simply mind blown at this school's awesomeness.

-The teacher:student ratio in his class is 4:7 with mixed ages/grades.
-There is a sensory room off the class room.
-There is a GARDEN the students will be working in.
-The entire class will be going to hippo (horse) therapy once a month.
-The teacher is fluent in ASL, uses it throughout the day, and does 20-30 minutes of ASL specific instruction DAILY.
-He'll do specials, writing, (and whatever else he can handle) in a mainstream class with same grade peers.
-Because he's the only reader in the FMD class, he'll go to another class on his reading level (likely 2nd grade) just for that one subject so he can continue to progress.
-The teacher has a peer tutoring program in which she personally selects 4-6th grade mainstream students (they have to apply and everything) to tutor and mentor her students.
-All 7 kids are some combination of corn free, soy free, dairy free, gluten free, dye free, etc. and the teacher is VERY aware of all their needs. I even over heard one of the other moms who will be sending special reverse osmosis water for her kid. So I'm no longer the only crazy diet mom AND I don't have to worry about my kid being handed gold fish or poptarts anymore.

And the kicker... Some of you may recall me talking about how the band Cage the Elephant lives here in Bowling Green. Here, they're just normal people you see out at the bars or at the coffee shop or at Kroger. lol So Bram's teacher asked Duffy if he was a native of BG and if he went to BG High (where several of the Cage the Elephant members went) and said "I'm only bringing this up because you're from here and about the right age but have you ever heard of Cage the Elephant?" And we were both like OMG OF COURSE and she says "oh well the lead singer and the bassist are my kids!" I have met their dad once (he goes to church with a friend of mine) but I had no idea their mom was a teacher! And apparently Matt (the lead singer) comes to the school several times a year just to hang with her students and participate in events and stuff. So Bram gets to go to school and hang out with a real life rock star!
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  #2  
Old 08-04-2015, 01:33 AM
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This is so positive! I am so happy for you and Bram and Duffy. Just amazing.
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  #3  
Old 08-04-2015, 01:58 AM
Shopaholic Shopaholic is offline
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wow that sounds great!! sounds like he has the right teacher!!!
~~~~~~~
and honestly, as a special ed teacher, I LIKE these kinds of programs. I know some want 100% mainstreaming and I see benefit in that too, but sometimes these programs ahve so much to offer kids that's really meaningful for them. This seems like a really great mix of the two!
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Last edited by Shopaholic; 08-04-2015 at 02:00 AM. Reason: Automerged Doublepost by CDN
  #4  
Old 08-04-2015, 02:27 AM
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Holly Golightly Holly Golightly is offline
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Awesome!
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  #5  
Old 08-04-2015, 02:33 AM
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So cool!!!
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  #6  
Old 08-04-2015, 02:39 AM
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Everything happens for a reason, YAYYY!!!! I am very happy for you
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  #7  
Old 08-04-2015, 03:08 AM
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Treighsie Treighsie is offline
I am SO EXCITED!!
 
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Wow!!! Super amazing!!!!
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Old 08-04-2015, 03:18 AM
AngelicScars AngelicScars is offline
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Oh wow! That's awesome!
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Old 08-04-2015, 06:39 AM
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That sounds absolutely fabulous!!!
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  #10  
Old 08-04-2015, 11:26 AM
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That sounds like an awesome school.
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Old 08-04-2015, 12:21 PM
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That sounds phenomenal!
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Old 08-04-2015, 12:47 PM
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Wow, you are truly blessed! You must be on cloud nine.
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Old 08-04-2015, 12:58 PM
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That sounds phenomenal!
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Old 08-04-2015, 01:33 PM
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that's so cool!
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Old 08-04-2015, 03:00 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Shopaholic View Post
wow that sounds great!! sounds like he has the right teacher!!!
~~~~~~~
and honestly, as a special ed teacher, I LIKE these kinds of programs. I know some want 100% mainstreaming and I see benefit in that too, but sometimes these programs ahve so much to offer kids that's really meaningful for them. This seems like a really great mix of the two!
Yeah, he was more or less mainstreamed at his 1st-2nd grade school, he was just being pulled out for "resource" (reading and math instruction). I believe it was considered the "mild disability" program which he had NO business being in. If I had known better and knew my options, I would have had him in FMD in 1st grade. No one EVER explained to me that the school in our zone wasn't the most supportive program they had to offer. Granted, the Kindy program he was in (in Elizabethtown) was designed for 5-6 year olds with mild disabilities but at the time he was already 6 when he started and was academically ahead of Kindy level work. It wasn't until I demanded another option that they were like "oh, well there's THIS but if we put him here he won't get the same kind of diploma as everyone else". Uh... not my concern! I want him where he'll thrive, not where he'll be "normal". The kid is 10 and 3'4" and speaks in memorized 1-3 word phrases. I was never aiming for normal.
~~~~~~~
And yeah... you guys... my MIL may never be getting her house back because we are totally staying in this district forever.

I just hope he gets to stay with *this* teacher for 4th, 5th, and 6th. There are 4 city elementary schools though so I'm not sure if it's broken up by grade like the county schools or if it's only broken up by type of classroom (they have a specific one just for kids with Autism, for example). Either way, once he's out of elementary school, there is only one middle school and one high school (the one Duff went to!) in the city district so assuming we stay in BG, he'll at least be with the same kids from 7-12.
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Also, I sell leggings and stuff.


Last edited by urchin_grey; 08-04-2015 at 03:05 PM. Reason: Automerged Doublepost by CDN
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