Undecided I guess you could say..
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  1. #1
    christahold is offline Junior Member Newbie
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    Default Undecided I guess you could say..

    Hi everyone!

    My name is Christa and I am in High Point, NC. I have two sons 12 and 5 both with disabilities. I am thinking heavily about homeschooling my 12 year old who is about to start middle school this Thursday. My only problem is and I guess why I am coming for some advice is he is diagnosed with PDD, ADHD, PTSD and bi-polar with a unspecified mood disorder (we spent more time last year in 5th grade getting in trouble and acting out than we did actually learning).... back to my problem. We went for his open house today and his teachers knew NOTHING of his diagnosis. "They had not been given his file yet and would not have it for at least another week, his EC teacher had it". I feel safe and comfortable sending my son to a school that knows nothing about him knowing the adjustment alone is going to drive him to act out, I think not.

    My question is, with his IEP and his EC time he is given through school, is it wise to homeschool? I know there will be an issue when it comes to his socialization, etc. But I am willing to find any possible way I can to deal with that part of his life. I am just at this point scared for him. The things his school last year let him get away with, wont be tolerated at the middle school and I just see my son walking out the front door with handcuffs and a resource officer in the first week. I am afraid he isnt going to actually be able to learn anything, if he even actually makes it to his classes (this will be his first year actually changing classes and a new teacher with every class). Change is one of his worst enemies.

    If anyone can offer advice, please do. I am stuck in what to do right now and trying to research as much as I can as quickly as I can to get this started if this could be something that would work for him.

    Thanks in advance.

  2. #2
    pandahoneybee's Avatar
    pandahoneybee is offline Senior Member
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    Hello Christa

    Let me say that my oldest went thru public school with learning disabilities, ADHD and and IEP up until 5th grade, so I know a little of what you are going thru trying to decide what is best for you all. I have to tell you that Middle School would have swallowed him whole with nothing left of what a wonderful boy I watched grow up!! Teachers in school are usually wonderful people (at least we had that experience) its usually the system or other kiddos we had problems with. I hated that every year in Jan they would teach to take the EOGs and EVERY year my son would just barely get to grade level and he would pass because of his IEP. Not really retaining anything of what they had crammed down his throat, to make themselves look better.(in my opinion anyways)

    I know its scary BUT we are heading into 9th GRADE this year and once I started teaching him to HIS learning style, he did soooo much better. AND he is retaining the information because it interests him. Not to say that we are even still there with SPELLING OR WRITING but we are further ahead then behind at this point. There were days in the beginning that I wondered if I could really do this for my boys, but I am glad that I stuck it out because it has been one of the greatest things that i have ever done in my life. I know that my boys are better people because of it too!

    So my advance, you really want it???? Take the plunge, there no saying that you can't go back to school IF you all can't do it. But I don't think that will be the case!! Start slow, find his weak spots and strengths play to those and the rest will fall into place. If you decide to homeschool you should look at time4learning for him, especially if he is a visual learner (like my oldest). We ended up going back to the 3rd grade and fast forwarding thru the program until we hit his grade level. WHY??? because he had so many gaps in his learning that i needed to make sure what he knew and what he didn't. PLUS he loved the cartoon lessons even laughing at the corny jokes!

    Best wishes on your decision just know that you are not alone and if you have any other questions, just ask( I will do my very best to answer them!)

  3. #3
    karenhs2's Avatar
    karenhs2 is offline Member
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    Please please please try homeschooling, at least for one year!! I haven't ever had mine in school but I do regular Getting Started workshops in the Charlotte area and so I talk to parents just like you all the time. Middle school is SO MUCH WORSE than elementary. I am not sure of all the reasons why, but it can be brutal for a child who is different in any way. My observation is that if a child has been hanging on the edge in elementary, they will fall off totally in Middle. The teachers don't seem to have as much time and attention to give. I don't really fault them, I believe that the system works against them - 20+ kids and so many with IEPs, it is more than a person can do. And now with the budget cuts, many are losing their teacher assistants.

    My 10 year old has Asperger's. That is more simple than what you are facing with your oldest and I can't imagine having him in school. It is not always easy at home but I have a LOT more room to work around his weaknesses while being able to allow him to fully utilize his strengths in a way that is impossible in school. We have used time4learning for 3 years and I love it and so does he!

    Think about it this way, can you really do any worse?!!! If I thought your fears and concerns about school were blown out of proportion, but everything you have mentioned, I have had confirmed over and over by parents with kids like ours. I don't know where you are or how difficult the social piece will be but I can tell you that you have time on that. It doesn't have to all be perfect right off the bat (or ever actually). I just posted some ideas for finding other homeschoolers in another thread. But you can get what you are doing at home working first. I mean, how many friends, real friends, is he likely to make at school anyway? And finding friends is the harder piece of socialization at home. Learning how to get along with others happens easier at home because they have more adult models which works better in the long run than a bunch of kids their age.

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