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How do I help my autistic child cope with a mainstream classroom?

Posted: Sat Dec 03, 2016 8:53 am
by ceekayvee
My 7-year-old son, after spending Kindergarten in a special education classroom was placed in a mainstream classroom for 1st grade. Things have gone horribly wrong from day one. One day, my son refused to stay in the classroom and walked out. The teacher and other staff were unable to get him to go back in the classroom. The eventually called me around noon to come pick him up, saying, "We can't just follow him around the halls all day."
He has a very difficult time focusing in class. The teacher told me that she was having to redirect Lonnie often to get him to pay attention. I asked her how often and she said she didn't know. I asked to keep a count and let me know. When she sent me the information, I was shocked. She kept info over a two week period. The lowest number of redirects for the day was 18. Most went into 30 and 40 redirects and one day, the number of redirects was 53. I asked what was going on and was told that anytime my son loses focus or starts to get frustrated, she has to get his attention, and she said he loses focus so often, she's constantly "redirecting" him.
This is not my understanding of what redirection is when it comes to autistic children at all. I'm very concerned about this because my opinion is that my son is in an environment that makes it virtually impossible to stay focused. And he has a teacher who doesn't recognize that when he's losing focus it's because he's confused, he's probably not processing or comprehending most of what she's saying and he ends up feeling overwhelmed and frustrated. I'm pushing to have my son transferred back to the special education class that he was in last year, one in which he thrived. The school administration has blocked our attempt to have him transferred even though his teacher, his speech therapist, his special ed teacher that he sees for a couple of hours a day and the assistant principal all agree that this is not an appropriate setting for him.
I'm torn because I'm having to send him to school every day and I know he's miserable there. Some days he has to be carried out of the house screaming and crying, he asks every day of the week, "When is Friday?"
Any advice on how to help him or help his teachers help him would be greatly appreciated.