a special needs/ homeschooling question - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 9 Old 11-21-2010, 07:52 AM - Thread Starter
 
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 i wasn't quite sure which forum this should go in, but i think it fits a little better here. basically, dd has been dx'd with high functioning autism. up until now (she's almost 7), we have been hsing at night before bedtime, after i get home from work. she has been having her therapies on the side, and it has been covered through insurance. well, the insurance people contacted us and let us know that her coverage for her speech therapy will be cut off at age 7 because at that age she should be getting it free through the school system  :o/  . i'm not sure what to do. i feel awful about her not going to speech, but i also don't want to put her in school JUST for that, yk? she is doing great at home. her speech issues are not severe, and she has made great progress over the last 18 mos she has been going there- but i still feel bad about it. i am going to try and contact the ins people next week and see if there is any way around it, but i have a feeling they are going to be quite stubborn. there is a program here that lets you pick and choose public school classes (called the family learning center- she would not be going to a regular public schoo and could go as few as 5 hrs a weekl), but she would still be considered a ps student, and i'm not sure i want that. any thoughts? suggestions?


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#2 of 9 Old 11-21-2010, 07:54 AM - Thread Starter
 
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wanted to add, we can't afford to pay for speech out of pocket obviously, or we'd just do that!


Leah- mama to Audrey born 12/29/03 and Gwyneth born 4/1/2009! Soon to be TTC #3!
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#3 of 9 Old 11-21-2010, 01:42 PM
 
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Some locations (states) are required to provide services even if you HS, other states are not required to do that.  Check what the laws are in your state (assuming you are in the states).

 

If your state doesn't provide to HS'ers, then the pick-and-choose option sounds like maybe the next best thing, but I'd check further into it and how they handle SN kids.


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#4 of 9 Old 11-21-2010, 03:24 PM
 
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I would recommend checking the benefits policy for your insurance.  Unless it specifies that therapy benefits are not provided for school age children, I don't think they can really cut you off.  It may be that they will try really hard to convince you to get services through the school district, but that they can't actually deny any claims if you choose to continue private therapy.


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#5 of 9 Old 11-21-2010, 05:11 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by laundrycrisis View Post

I would recommend checking the benefits policy for your insurance.  Unless it specifies that therapy benefits are not provided for school age children, I don't think they can really cut you off.  It may be that they will try really hard to convince you to get services through the school district, but that they can't actually deny any claims if you choose to continue private therapy.



i was thinking something like this. need to call them tomorrow or tues.


Leah- mama to Audrey born 12/29/03 and Gwyneth born 4/1/2009! Soon to be TTC #3!
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#6 of 9 Old 11-21-2010, 07:27 PM
 
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I'd also suggest checking with your school dist. to see if homeschooled special needs kids qualify for services.  In my state they do (speech, OT, PT, etc.) even if they are homeschooled.


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#7 of 9 Old 11-22-2010, 08:12 AM
 
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Actually, at the age of 3yo, it is Federal law that dictates that therapies are provided by the school district for anything that would inhibit a child's ability to function in a classroom.  You happened to have insurance, but the law is there to protect children who either don't have insurance or whose insurance wouldn't cover what they really need.  In many states, the right to special education services as a homeschooler is explicitly stated.  I move from NJ (where there is NOTHING on the books about any aspect of homeschooling) to IL (where there is no regulation, but the rights to SpEd are explicitly stated).  I know that we considered going to TX because the rights were explicit, too (although they also have close to no regulation).

 

You can get a jump start by checking for your state here:  http://www.hslda.org/strugglinglearner/sn_states.asp

 

I wouldn't expect the district to put it all out on the table.  :)  Traditionally, they tell you just enough to answer the question legally.

 

If you're in a state that explicitly grants rights to hs'd kids, I would continue to do so; but I will put it out there that the school is not likely to be supportive of this decision with a child anywhere in the spectrum.  Their mindset is that "those are the kids who need the classroom environment most".  So I would prepare myself for that response and bullying in case it happens.  And I say this as a former teacher with an ASD kid who was bullied 42 ways till Sunday about keeping my kid out of the classroom despite him ALSO having an immune deficiency and food allergies--and hearing the same from other ASD parents.  The mindset is that there is no other way for them to learn social skills and that this is the biggest stumbling block.  Just be prepared.  And if you happen to be in a state that has passed a "Child's Bill of Rights", I would read that all the way through and make sure that the state cannot hold you accountable for "acting in a child's best interest".  This was proposed in NJ and I was very concerned because it gave CPS the ability to intervene when it was deemed that you were not just neglecting or abusing your child, but simply not acting "in their best interest"--which is highly subjective (and likely why it hasn't been passed yet--but other states HAVE passed a version of Child's Bill of Rights).

 

I'm just mentioning this because you need to be prepared if you're going to open that door... and hopefully, it's unnecessary, but you don't want to be knee-deep into it when you find out it IS!  


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#8 of 9 Old 11-24-2010, 08:15 PM
 
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I live in OK where the public schools do very little to help out homeschoolers.  They only thing they have to cover is speech therapy, but you have to be 50% delayed in speech or 25% delayed in speech and have delays in other areas as well.  My dd has a 25% speech delay, but no other delays (according to them, but that was when she was 6 and they don't diagnose LD's until 7-8 years old, she definitely has some LD's.)  So, we're unable to get any help.  But you might very well be able to just get speech therapy through the public school system.  Check into it.


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#9 of 9 Old 11-25-2010, 07:23 AM - Thread Starter
 
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well, i would rather avoid the ps system. im going to talk to the therapist and find out where she's at and if she really needs to continue there, or if there are things we can do at home to help he continue to make progress.


Leah- mama to Audrey born 12/29/03 and Gwyneth born 4/1/2009! Soon to be TTC #3!
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