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Ok, I just need to vent a little bit.<br><br>
We have almost 100% confidence that our 3-year-old son is autistic. Our consultant who has worked with our older son for the past couple of years has confirmed that informally, and has done a pre-clinic screening where she again agreed with our suspicions. But, since we live in this school district we can't have her clinic do the evaluation - it would cost us about $1700 and we just don't have that. Our district would have to pick up the tab and since they believe they have the BEST autism program in the state there is no way they will cover that. So, we have to have the screening/eval done through them. The evaluation itself isn't the thing that bugs me. What bugs me is we have been through all of this with them with DS1. We have fought hard for proper services for him and they have all along refused to accept any outside input. They are so convinced that their program is a one-size-fits-all wonder program that they will not consider that it might not be appropriate for DS1. They just claim that whatever gains he doesn't make are because he CAN'T make them. They have told me to my face - he will "always" need such and such supports. He will "never" be able to do such and such. We have brought our private consultant to meetings and they have blatantly ignored every single comment she made, to the point of obviously not responding to her even to acknowledge that she spoke. This was with three "higher ups" at one particular meeting. DS1 made ONE MONTH of developmental progress according to their assessments between the age of 2 1/2 and 4. Then we pulled him out, kept only home-based therapy services and hired a private verbal behavior specialist, who within a month had him pointing, using PECS, and loving his three-hours a day ABA/VB program. The school officials claimed ALL the credit for his gains over the next six months - and stated that clearly to our consultants face.<br><br>
I have no intention of sending DS2 to their preschool, and they know that. So of course they are THRILLED to hear from me requesting this eval. But, since we are so freaking broke I need DS2 to be on our state family support program to help with special programs that we want him involved in, and to help cover materials, and so that we can have a formal assessment to send to our older son's consultant so that we can then access her services for DS2 as well. We homeschool and I have every single intention of continuing to homeschool. The kids are doing very well.<br><br>
I just hate having to go through this again - I hate how condescending they are when I call them, and how they get that tone of voice that just grates on my nerves, telling me that their "gut feeling" is that he would do so much better in a preschool setting. And I wish I was more outspoken and just told them exactly what I think but I'm not - and I hate that, too.<br><br>
Ugh.<br><br>
Thanks for letting me vent.
 

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Experts, my a$$! Sounds like they've got lots of things wrong about autism. If a person believes autists can't learn to do things or has the audacity to tell a parent, "He will never do such-and-such," then s/he simply just doesn't understand enough about autism. Yikes. I'm sorry you have to deal with this again. As I neared the end of your post, I started thinking, "Well, she just has to go in there armed with literature and an attitude..." but then I saw your final words about that not being you. I can respect that. Can't relate, but can respect it <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/lol.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="lol"> Perhaps you can make a few simple requests. For instance, ask that they only report to you about your son in positive terms (jeez, someone has to tell them that!). Ask that they refrain from making sweeping comments about your son's future (and that!) If you don't feel comfortable doing it, have someone else (a DH?) do it.
 

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Thanks Kerry!<br><br>
I actually have gotten a lot better about speaking my mind - it's amazing what kids will do to you! I say what I intend to say, I just don't always like how "nice" I find my self trying to be when I truly want to just say it like it is and not care how it sounds. I hate confrontational situations and end up wanting to just get through it as quickly as possible. I have such a poor taste in my mouth from our experience with DS1 and our school district that I just want to get through this dumb eval process and be done with it. My DH will probably not be able to be at the meetings. He's much better at speaking his mind directly than I am, but it's hard for him to swing it with his work so he doesn't make many appointments or meetings. He will try to work it out if I ask him to, though. He detests our district as much as I do so I know he won't be pushing for services through them either - we both would rather just skip the whole eval process except for the outside services it will help us receive.
 

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Oh wow, that sucks. I hate the school district we are dealing with for ds2 now and was happy to leave them when ds1 graduated preschool last year. Now we are also having trouble with ds2 evals because get this... he's autistic and of average or above average intelligence. They apparently think that can't happen. So I kind of know how you feel.
 

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((hugs)) I am sory you are dealing with a crappy district. I can totally relate we took DS to his first evaluation I was told it would take upwards of 2 or more hours they spent 15 min with us and totally dismissed our concerns. Some times dealing with specialists is so hard
 
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