For the record, let me say I hate general misconceptions about people diagnosed on the popular catch word “Autism spectrum”. Not every child diagnosed under the umbrella of Autism are the same. In fact, even kids diagnosed with Asperger’s are different…just like the rest of us. We all have individual issues… I wish people, instead of lumping them all together actually took the time to see we are all different–some of us just have labels.
“I have a student in my class with Autism who cannot handle any mention of blood and literally gets up and leaves during any of those discussions. As a result, she would not be a good candidate for the honors program, primarily because she misses large portions of class time..” The teacher said. “I know your son has some familiarity of the spectrum..” she said. Stopping her I jumped in and said, “My son has Asperger’s, which basically comes down to socialization more so than anything else…” I replied. “Okay…I don’t know your son and I’m not trying to make any judgments here. I’m just trying to inform you of the very small experiences I have with kids on the spectrum. You know your son and his abilities and if you believe he could handle the work load then I have no problem welcoming him into my class…” She explained.
Yesterday Mary Alice accompanied me to the boy’s school so we could meet with a teacher to determine the boy’s placement in a class the next school term. If you recall, last month I wrote a blog titled the Mama Bear Reflex, which explained the reason for the meeting.
“Hey I just left the school and I think leaving the boy in College Prep is the best course of action…” I said into the phone receiver as Mary Alice and I drove away. “Okay…why?” He asked. “The requirement for the class is to have an A in Religion and an A in English-he currently has a B+” I said. “In addition she explained a two part writing tablet, which she collects weekly- that he would have to find references to and then correlations to previous learned facts and write….” “Oh yeah, no, he would never be able to keep up with that…” my husband interjected. “I told her he could probably handle the work verbally…but not be able to write…” I added. “Yes, but why make him?” He added. “You know I think I understand what that other teacher was talking about now…but wow, did she stink at explaining it to us…” I said. “Yes, she was not a good communicator…” He added. “I mean really if she had just said upfront he needed an A in English this would have been a mute point” I finished.
On a side note…Mary Alice must have thought I was interviewing for a job and tried to help me out. Half way through the meeting she leaned forward, lifted her right hand and placed it on my shoulder then said, “You know she’s a really nice and giving person. She really is. She would be really good in everything you need.” The teacher smiled at me and then at Mary Alice and said, “Well, I’m sure she is and how very kind of you.” I meanwhile leaned back and patted Mary Alice’s knee saying, “Oh Mary Alice, you’re so sweet…” and then laughed. “Well it’s true” she said with a laugh. “Well you make it easy for me…” I returned before turning back to the teacher to finish the meeting.