Spring Break is over so its back to the normal routine and the beginning of the last part of Grade 1. I opened Johnny’s bag and found two notes in his bag. Today’s news is that one teacher is saying good bye while another begins her time at Johnny’s school. We knew that Johnny’s Grade 1 teacher was pregnant early in the school year so we knew that this day was coming. Johnny REALLY enjoyed her and we liked how she was eager to learn how to he learned and how to find alternative ways to help him learn the material. The Grade 1 teacher was a breathe of fresh air and every day he went to school with a smile on his face and came home a little tired but still smiling. But now she is leaving everyone is concerned how Johnny will handle this loss. How has he been? He is a little more emotional the past week but he says he likes the new teacher. He also tells me that he understands that his other teacher is growing a baby and its time for the baby to be born. He remembers when I was pregnant with his sister and going to all of my doctor appointments and watching my body change month by month. He told me the teacher talked about her changes and he is fine with everything. I think he was prepared very well but that doesn’t mean he isn’t picking up on the anxiety from the rest of his peers as they all adjust to these changes together.
I am actually more concerned about how Johnny handles the new teacher. Will he like her? Will she try? Does she have any training teaching Autistic children? Has she ever taught any children with special needs? All of these questions and more are swirling in my head as I prepare for yet another big meeting next week regarding the annual review by school board officials of Johnny’s placement in special education. Sometimes it feels that our advocacy for Johnny never ends. Just when you think you have won a battle and are moving forward you find another “pot-hole” and you have to quickly assess and decide to take action. Today I am thinking about writing a small letter to the new teacher introducing Johnny to her but I am also wondering how I can get the school board issued iPad used more efficiently in the classroom to facilitate his learning opportunities?
Usually I write a thank you note to each teacher at the end of a school year with something made by Johnny. This is what I would have given the Grade 1 teacher at the end of June but I shared it early and wished her a happy and healthy birth experience.
Soon after Johnny received the diagnosis of autism spectrum disorder we realized it would now take the community to help him move forward. That was three and half years ago and he has changed and grown leaps and bounds you are now part of a circle of people professionals teachers friends and helped us with all come together to help him move forward . One day you will get to look back and say I knew him when. Thank you for everything you did for Johnny he appreciates it.