Friday, February 18, 2011

A long chat

Yesterday I had a long chat with our CDSA coordinator.

1- We originally asked for one 60 minute speech session per week, but the speech therapist said they only do up to 45 min sessions. Instead, she suggested we could do two 30 min sessions per week to get the full 60 mins. This was approved by CDSA and is what we have been doing. Unfortunately, it means we have to pay double the copay, one for each visit. Apparantly, it also means CDSA has to pay double. Our coordinator wanted to switch back to once per week. I explained to her that I had asked the speech therapist a few weeks ago if she thought we should move to once per week, but her opinion was that she thinks Sweets really needed the full 60 minutes per week. I don't want to give her less therapy just because of money if her therapist thinks she really needs more. In the end, the coordinator agreed that we would do one of two things. A- Get the therapist to do one 60 minute session per week, even though she says they don't do that. B- If we are going to do two sessions per week, make them 45 min sessions, since it costs the same to us either way. So, either way, we'll be getting more therapy for our dollar.

2- The coordinator wanted to know what the PT is working on with Sweets, because she thought that Sweets had met her PT goals. We talked some about her PT goals, such as #7 - "Will have advanced motor skills so that she can go across uneven surfaces and eventually be able to run" which I don't think she's met. I know that the PT takes her outside to walk on the grass (uneven surfaces) and that they also work on steps. This week, the PT said that they worked on the ladder to the slide, and that Sweets should be able to climb up and help pull herself up with her arms, but that she isn't doing it. The PT and I have also noted that Sweets can walk well, but that she is still unsteady and falls down a lot. I wonder if she has balance issues, or if she is just over-confident right now. The coordinator asked some questions about sensory issues because that can lead to balance problems, but I haven't noticed any sensory issues.

3- The coordinator sat in on the DT session yesterday. She noticed that Sweets is interested in the shape sorter, but is not really able to do it. She recommeded an OT eval. I didn't really think fine motor was an issue for her, but I don't mind having an eval to check it out. We scheduled it for Monday, since I'll be home with the kids for Presidents Day.

4- We also talked about whether the home daycare environment is going to continue to be the best option for Sweets. Right now, except for Munchkin 2 days per week (and Munchkin will be in kindergarten starting this summer), Sweets is the oldest kid there. The other two babies are 10 and 18 months younger than Sweets. The boy who was 6 months older left 4 months ago, leaving Sweets without a real peer role model. Particularly because of her delays, it would be good for her to see other kids model age-appropriate behaviors. The coordinator believes that now that Sweets is getting older and is walking, that the balance may be ready to tip from the benefits of the small group home care (which is great for an infant) to the social interactions with peers. I think that I agree with this.

My original thought was that we could send her to TLS, where Munchkin goes, but the coordinator suggested we look into another center, CLC. CLC is an integrated center for kids with special needs and typical children. I am familiar with this concept because Munchkin was at PK as an infant (where we met our home daycare provider), which was the same way. They try to keep a 50/50 balance between kids with an IFSP/IEP and without. They have a therapy room and their own therapists on staff. This center also has a contract with the public schools so that if Sweets qualifies for a developmental classroom (once she is 3) then the public schools would pay her tuition at this center during the school year and we would only have to pay for summers. They have two classrooms there with spots for 12 kids in each, with one lead teacher and two assistant teachers per class, so nice ratios too. CLC goes age 2-5, so we could theoretically move Sweets in 2 months at her birthday if we wanted to. It seems most practical though, to start her there when Munchkin starts kindergarten, esp because Munchkin would still be at our home daycare 2 days per week until then (she doesn't have a full-time slot at TLS). If Munchkin gets into year-round school, it would be very convenient, because CLC is right next door and even shares a parking lot with that school! I will be taking the tour at CLC on Monday, since I have off for Presidents Day. I didn't even know about this place until yesterday, but it sounds really good so far!

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