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Kindergarten transition not going as planned

post #1 of 9
Thread Starter 

My son hasn't even started school yet(first day is Thursday) and I am stressed.  He has hearing loss and has bilateral cochlear implants, he will have an FM system and a sound field for the class.  My son will be in a regular education classroom with just a few basic modifications-mainly the equipment and then preferential seating and a few other things.


We(myself and his private speech therapist and audiologist) have been trying to contact the school to find out his teacher placement as well as to set up a day we can all go in before Thursday(when school starts) to go over his needs with his teacher and any other necessary staff as well as how to work his equipment and troubleshoot any issues that may come up during the day, like checking his the implant connections first, then the batteries, etc.  This isn't going well.  We haven't been able to connect with anyone to set anything up.  Right now it is looking like we will bring our son to school on Thursday with all the other parents and be stuck trying to show his teacher the equipment while there are 20 other kids being brought into the classroom.  This doesn't work for me and I know it will overwhelm the teacher. 


I understand teachers have not been assigned yet as they have to finish up kindergarten evaluation(they have more Wed).  This school is fantastic, I love the staff, but it is chaos right now.  They just started up school for the 1st/2nd grade, our 4 local elementary schools have shifted into (2) K-2 and (2) 3-5 schools so there were a lot of teachers moving schools and kids moving schools as well so  I get that it is very chaotic right now.  My son's private speech therapist has been in constant contact with the special education person at the school board and things just are not progressing.  Is there anything else we can do?  It may be too late for this year, but is there something we can do for next year to minimize this issue?

post #2 of 9

Doing the same thing for my kiddo. School starts tomorrow and I know nothing. It is super frustrating. 

post #3 of 9
Thread Starter 

Is this normal possibly then?  We had the complete opposite going into prek.  Though he started off in a special needs classroom, but the staff were very involved with his transition both into prek3 and then into a regular prek4 classroom.  In fact, I talked to them today while at the preschool for orientation for my youngest child and they are supposed to contact the school as well to see if they can get things going.

post #4 of 9
Originally Posted by ~cassie~ View Post
Is there anything else we can do?  It may be too late for this year, but is there something we can do for next year to minimize this issue?


I would put it in his IEP for next year that he will have his teacher assignment and you will have a meeting with his teacher and the special ed teach a minimum of (X) days prior to the start of the school year to set up the equipment and instruct the teacher in it's use.

post #5 of 9

OK, now I think both your schools are VERY different than the schools here.  Our school starts Monday, and I have known his teacher since the 11th, and he goes for a "Meet the Teacher Night" tomorrow.  Our school makes placements as we go, so they evenly place the kids in August, and then fit the additions in as they go.  If they have to add a class, they will pull kids from the class.  I would go up to the school tomorrow, about an hour after the start of school, so things can calm down, and ask to speak to an administrator.  They should help arrange a time for you to speak to the teacher one on one (maybe during recess or PE or even after school).  That way the teacher can get the info, and you can get him what he needs.


What the PP stated about the IEP was right on, ask for notification of your son's teacher 2 weeks before the start of school, and a meeting with that teacher to discuss mods at least 3 days before the start of school.  Make the timing specific, have them note who (specific name or position) is responsible for getting you that info, and how you contact them.  

post #6 of 9

My suspicion is that it's incredibly chaotic because of the move. I'm puzzled that you don't have your teacher assignment though. We don't get our super early, but school starts Sept. 4th and we'll know on the 29th of August who my daughter will have. It's been like that every year.


One option would be for you to bring him to school on Thursday (is that tomorrow or a week from tomorrow?) EARLY (as soon as they open), and talk to the teacher about the system, and if s/he's too overwhelmed with it the first day, bring your son home and meet the teacher(s) after school to get it set up.


Another would be for you to camp on their doorstep until you get someone's attention. Sometimes being there is what needs to happen.

post #7 of 9
Thread Starter 

We finally got into contact with them around 10 am and managed to meet with his teacher at 1pm.  They have always waited until the evening before school starts to list teacher assignments to avoid a lot of parents changing their kids and they also were still doing kindergarten evals and figuring out placements(they level the kids).  But anyway, we did see his teacher, meet with the inclusion teacher, the coordinator for the school, and speech therapist.  It went very well and eased my fears!  I don't think she fully understands the equipment but that will come with time as she has time and hands on experience with him.  Iwill be putting it in the IEP for next year to be able to find out the teacher before the start of school and have a meeting with the staff. 

post #8 of 9

I am glad it worked out for you.  I would suggest that you keep a binder (or computer document) with a list of the things you want included in your next IEP.  As the school year continues, you might have more things to add.  That way, you won't forget anything.



post #9 of 9

I'm so happy everything is working out! I hadn't commented because I couldn't think of anything to add that hadn't be said, but I've been thinking about you and your little one.


Thursday was our first day, too. But we are returning to the same school and most of the same teachers. Returning is soooo much easier than starting some place new.

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