Thanks for starting this board, Fuskie. It comes just as my DS finishes 8th grade. He starts public high school in the fall.He has had an IEP (individual education plan for children with special needs) since kindergarten, and he has worked very, very hard in school all his life. In 4th, 5th and 6th grade, I asked the teachers and specialists on his team if they thought he would be able to go to college, and almost all said no. I never told DS that because I don't believe them, and neither does my DH. DS has a great mind, and he will find a way. His dream is to go to college and I think he will get there.What I plan to do when he starts 9th grade in the fall is to talk to the guidance counselor about what he needs to do for the next four years to make sure that it happens. I will talk to all the teachers, counselors, and specialists so that they are aware of what his goal is. DH and I are very involved parents when it comes to school. DH has always been the only father who attends the PTO meetings - besides the principal - for the past 8 years. He and one other father were the only ones at the "facts of life" assembly for the boys in the fifth grade. DH takes him to sporting events and sports practices. I am the one who mostly talks to the teachers since I have more leeway in answering phone calls and email than he does. We both attend all conferences and team meetings. It's a system that has worked very well. Everybody knows us; we have good working relationships with everyone in the school.As far as coursework goes, DH has been there helping with math and science homework, projects, and understanding subject matter. I help with English (when I can!) and his music courses. Between the two of us we have a good system going.DS has always been interested in Social Studies and ancient history, and as DH is a history buff as well, they have a common interest that they can discuss. And I mean discuss deeply. DS amazes me with his depth of knowledge and understanding of the world. His math skills are getting better. His science skills are low, but he continues to work hard at it. He does not give up even when it seems to be impossible for him. The result has been he does catch on. This gives him the fulfillment of mastering a hard subject.The IEP has been a good and workable experience for us. He toyed around with the idea of going to private high school, but his needs would not be met there. I want him to get the professional help he needs, and that is only available in the public school. We have been blessed with excellent trained professionals in special needs education who are dedicated to their work. I expect to have the same experience in high school.Didn't mean for this post to be so long! I suppose I just wanted to put down what is in my mind and maybe it will help me to organize what to do over the next year. Andrea
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