I followed up on my letter requesting the evaluations. I was told their attorney was on vacation and that they couldn’t make any decisions until they spoke with him. Yes, they always consulted their attorney when dealing with me now. Although the attorney was always arrogant with me he really should have loved me cause I must have given him quite a boost in his salary.
As a matter of fact, at the last IEP meeting the district had invited their board attorney who in fact was pretty much running the meeting. I realized that this was done in an attempt to intimidate me from advocating for my son. Since, I did not have an attorney at the meeting to represent me I stated that under IDEA it states it is discouraged for an attorney to be present at an IEP meeting because it creates an adversarial environment. The attorney replied, “The law says a lot of things. I replied, “But that is the law!” He replied, “Yeah, Yeah Whatever!” It is one of the many infamous quotes that I still have on audiotape.
In any event, I was tired of the “waiting game”. It was now May of second grade and my son still wasn’t academically where he should be at. We had a new superintendent so I decided to make my plea to him. I set up a meeting. I gathered all my facts, excerpts from the communication book, previous evaluation reports with highlighted sections, research that I gathered, etc… Lastly, I made a copy of the audiotape for him and strategically rewound it to the attorney and my conversation. “Yeah, Yeah Whatever!” I had listened to it maybe one hundred times by now. My tax dollars at work!
The superintendent listened to all the facts I had presented. He listened intently. I think the audiotape was the icing on the cake. He was really disgusted with the way I had been spoken too. This guy had a heart!!! He wasn’t even too sure about this vision therapy stuff but he said, “Do you really think this will help your son?” I said, “Yes, I really do.” He approved both evaluations. Now I know this wasn’t the legal process of getting an evaluation approved because I knew the IEP team was the one who was suppose to have the power but I was a smart lady and I figured out pretty quick who really had the power. By the way, the superintendent confided in me that he intended on getting rid of both the Special Education Director and his attorney friend that he had brought into the district. He already knew their reputation. Once I even spoke to an attorney who referred to them as the “gruesome twosome.”
Jone 3, 2004 the case manager sent a letter, “Per out telephone conversation, the district will grant your request for two evaluations: A Neurodevelopmental Evaluation and a Developmental Optometry Evaluation.”
The case manager had mis-stated in her letter. It was not a Neurodevelopmental Evaluation that I asked for, it was a Neuropsychological Evaluation but I clarified it and a voucher was granted. Although I lived in New Jersey I would travel to Lancaster, Pa. for this evaluation. This woman came with rave reviews. She was a Nationally Certified School Psychologist with neuropsychological training. She had tons of education and graduated Cum Laude and Summa cum Laude, had continuing education at Pennsylvania State University and YALE. She had even done her dissertation on “Cognitive Predictors of the Dyslexia Syndrome”. I reviewed her curriculum vitae. I was impressed. I also found a great resort with a water playground close by. I decided we would have a little get away. I called it the “evaluation vacation”. I made the appointment.
You can read more about Dr. Margaret Kay at:
and our vacation getaway at:
In the meantime, I also set up an appointment with a Developmental Optometrist.
Lastly, I sent a letter to the district that stated,”This is to clarify your June 3rd letter. I am in disagreement with the I.E.P. proposed on March 26th. I was assured by you that the team would continue to work on the document until I am satisfied with the contents. We have agreed that we will reconvene after all the new evaluations are in. At that time if we are unable to come to an agreement I will proceed with the necessary steps to ensure my son receives an appropriate program based upon his needs. If this occurs, please be aware that the last “agreed upon I.E.P.” remains in effect. I will remain hopeful that we will come to an agreement at our meeting in the summer.”
I waited in anticipation for the evaluations and wondered what they would say…..
Copyrighted 2011: danadogooder and DMT