Wednesday, April 11, 2012

ABC's of Special Education

A- Acronyms LD, BD, ASD, IEP, LEA, OT, ST Oh my! There are so many abbreviations and acronyms for special education terminology one would think they were in another country. Learn the acronyms so when the codes are spoken by educators you are completely aware of what is being said and offered to your child.

B- Behavior Plan Many times students with disabilities are placed on a behavior plan in order to be reprimanded and tracked by law enforcement agencies. When agreeing to a behavior plan, ensure that data collected is accurate, researched and empirical data that does not fall within the categories of paraprofessional services that your child is entitled.

C- Counsel Always enlist effective counsel to represent you and your child’s behalf. This could be community advocates or a special education attorney. They will assist in getting the best possible services your child deserves.

D- Documentation Always record every meeting, phone call and occurrence which deals with your child. Document date, time and who was around even if the person did not participate. If correspondence is thru email or postal make sure you mark date and time received.

E- Examine Examine all school files thoroughly regarding your child at least once a year. Access your state’s school code regarding how to request records and what is allowed. Be specific in your request, ask for temporary, permanent, special education as well as any other forms of correspondence regarding your child. Also put down specific names of individuals who might have any information on your child.

F- Forgive Oftentimes you, the school even your child will make unintentional mistakes. Your job is to know the difference between a mistake and willful disregard. If it is a mistake forgive the individual and continue with a strong intent that another incident will not be allowed.

G- Gratitude There are some teachers and paraprofessionals who really attempt to assist in your child’s progress. Show appreciation and gratitude for the effort.

H- Hire I have said it before and I will reiterate, hire effective counsel and professionals outside the school. They will often provide an unbiased opinion and sounding board upon which you can depend especially when the public education system want to mislabel or rediagnose your child.

I- Individualized Education Plan (IEP) Every student with a disability should have an IEP with the operative term being “Individualized.” Oftentimes cookie cutter IEP’s are written for students offering limited services. Be informed on rights of student and available services in order to properly tailor your child’s plan to fit him/her.

J- Joining Join groups and affiliates within the community to provide support, education and resources for you and your child.

K- Keep Keep everything from the school pertaining to your child, that includes records, receipts, emails, letters in the envelopes, even keep recipes (yes I still have a recipe my daughter’s kindergarten teacher sent me). You always want to be aware of every detail of your child’s school career.

L- Listen Listen to school representatives and advocates, listen to your intuition but most importantly listen to your child’s verbal and especially non-verbal communication. Many times children display how they feel and how things are going in school if you just still yourself and listen.

M- Monitor Monitor your child’s progress and interactions by visiting the school or sending a proxy. Many schools are making it more difficult to enter into the school but be diligent, you have a right to view your child’s environment.

N- Note I cannot stress enough how important it is to keep accurate notes, especially at IEP meetings. If possible bring someone to meetings just for that purpose to take notes. That way any discrepancies or disagreements can easily be diffused.

O- Oppose It is alright to oppose a suggestion from an educator regarding your child’s needs. No one knows your child better than you. We tend to think that just because a teacher has a degree they are an expert on children but last time I checked no one knows every child in the world.

P- Placement Whether your child is placed in special education classes or alternative school, be sure that the placement will fit and meet your child’s needs not the schools. Alternative schools give the public education system the means to make more money but sometimes are not a good environment for certain children.

Q- Question If you have a feeling or do not understand something regarding your child’s needs, behavior or progress, ask questions until you get clarity.

R- Reports Each quarter or semester a report should be generated by general education, special education and paraprofessionals regarding your child’s progress. Make sure you are receiving all measurable data from every individual that works with your child.

S- Study Study books and manuals about your child’s disability, Special Education laws, disability laws, civil right laws and school codes to stay abreast of developments, changes and services upon which your child is entitled.

T- Transition Some students have a hard time transitioning to new environments every year. Ask that your child be placed before the end of the current school year so that they may be introduced to the new surrounding before the start of the next school year. This will assist in adaptability.

U- Understand Understand that no one has all the answers, even if some educators like to think they do. When a problem cannot be solved right away, understand it is not you or them or your child it just will take some time to find the right fit.

V- Voice You and your child has a voice and is entitled to be heard, so speak clearly with conviction.

W- Watch Watch for any signs of maltreatment, children with disabilities are often misused and abused because of their inability to communicate effectively. If you suspect anything go with that feeling because it is often correct.

X- Don’t have an (X) but if I think of one I will insert.

Y- Yourself We as parents, especially mothers, get so caught up in taking care of everything and everyone we neglect ourselves. Raising a child with a disability is extremely hard and time consuming, make sure you schedule some “me” time even if it is nothing but a hot bath at midnight. Your body, mind and spirit will thank you as well as people around.

Z- Zeal Let’s face it raising a child with a disability is a cause, a crusade. Continue the struggle with lots of zeal and pizazz.

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

ReVolution Love

The time of planting seeds and awaiting the harvest has vastly approached us all. This is a time to shed old skins and resurface anew. There is a shift occurring right now, a transformative spirit of higher consciousness. As we begin this transformational period into the spiritual consciousness of freedom the poetic beat within us all draws us closer in order to answer the call. The pull is so powerfully magnanimous that one has no choice but to either succumb and submit or fight against in order to uphold the egotistical ideologies and conditionings bred for many generations. The time is now to begin once again, to start over and remember what we are all here to do… LOVE.
Yes that is correct; the Revolution of Evolution has forsaken us and brought our generation into the present time of nothingness. This happening is sweeping us from the lowliest valleys to the snow-capped mountains, churning, turning, burning in us all. For first it must occur in the
spiritual before it appears in the natural. First it must be thought before it becomes form in order to manifest into a state of being: I AM.
The ReVolution spiral into infinite space for it is everlasting life which is freedom: Freedom of thought, Freedom of action, Freedom of change. It is all releasing from the chains that bind into an infinite space of absolution. Something is formed from the nothingness, wrapped in a crystallized hourglass filled with sand of one time: Now.
This formulation will create Anu World Order, for the shell of the old holds the seed of the new. The emergence will be so great we will all live victoriously in perfect balance and harmony once more. The Sumerians, Mayans, Egyptians and Greeks continue to have us awe stricken from their manifestation of this true potential. These phenomenal occurrences are so foreign to us we often call it alien or extra-terrestrial. For Alien is a foreign concept, Ali En, Ali being that of elevation or exaltation and En(An) which is one. So in essence what we have is one who is elevated or exalted.
We have immortalized these aliens’ as such sentient beings in a time and space called history. Yes it is his story, their story, our story, yours and mine the absolute truth…LOVE
Truth is love
Love is truth

Re Volution Love is God’s spiral turning continuously in infinite space. This is the galaxy, the universe, a vortex which sucks you into infinite discovery. From that all things flow in its abundant natural order of outer chaos, for chaos is the black hole of death, despair, apathy and contempt. This optimization of hatred is no longer operational for the scales must be recalibrated to restore balance once more. Love must reside inside us all, radiating outside our bodies, illuminating the entire universe. The lesser light must be shifted and transformed into the greater light and as we move through the darkness unveiling truth, the greatest light shall be revealed bringing forth bliss or Utopia, the promise land which is available to us all.
Peace, Love, Bliss

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Greatness Pt. 1: Awakening

I often subscribe to the philosophy that we all have the potential for Greatness. After
all we are cut from the same cloth of the most infinite, perfect being in all
the universal creations. We are governed by natural and supernatural/spiritual laws and once that combination of Earthly and Heavenly realms join together in harmonious balance, our light will radiate at full optimization.

Exercise 1

To assist in this exercise you will need the following tools:
New Pad of Paper/Journal

*To truly access the spirit of your
new state of being, create a ritual and buy a special pen and pad. It does not need to be extravagant or costly. The pen and paper you use can be a different color than what you normally use. This will bring a greater connection as you invite your conscious to participate in the exercise releasing some resistance.

Before going to bed place your pen and paper on a nightstand or table near the side you sleep. If you choose a time or space other than the bedroom such as an alter room, study or other sacred space be sure to place your tools where the can readily be accessed. The less movement you have during your quiet state, the less activation your mind will incur which will prevent those blockages and obstructions caused by your ego.

Let us Begin:
In the calm state of your mind, grab your pad/journal and
pen and meditate for one minute on your wishes.
Any longer and your ego might interrupt your connection, remember we are
trying to access only what the heart desires you to know.

Begin with a statement “I wish for_________________”
(complete the statement)

List at least three wishes but no more than five. Record whatever comes to mind first even if
it sounds silly or out of reach. Do not ponder your wishes for that will not be your heart but rather your ego will come into play.

Continue this practice once a day for one week. Do not read your wishes we are accessing the
heart not attempting to imprint the mind for later use. Repetition in reading will only create an
automatic responder and block what is in the heart at that moment.

At the end of your week, make a list of all the wishes and compare the days to view if any wishes repeated. The repetitive wishes are those which you desire most and what will be used to begin your journey to Walk in Greatness.

Peace, Love, Bliss

Monday, January 2, 2012

New Year's Relationship InTENtions!

It's a New Year! and as always we strive to make each year better than the last, in ourselves, our careers and our relationships. We make our resolutions fully expecting to stay in stride based on our promises at the stroke of midnight January 1 only to fall short from not giving our full energy. By the end of the year we beat ourselves up with shoulda, coulda, woulda. Where we falter most is not having the present moment intention, instead we speak in future tense “I Will.” This year you and your partner shall speak your relationship as it is (and so it shall be) in the here and now and those times yet to come. To start your year off right consider, meditate, and discuss the top ten Relationship Intentions. Use, modify and/or create for a brighter today and greater tomorrow.

For the list of affirmations/intentions visit Keys to Relationships