You know how I said that my kid is damned smart under the crossed language wires in his head? How I said he was likely to pass the tests they were giving him this time around because of it, even though he's far from out of the woods with his language skills yet? Yeah, well. Speech therapist was over the house this afternoon working with him and she told me I nailed that prediction.
The standard procedure is to administer two big batteries of tests to evaluate students' language progress. We got the results from the school yesterday. Thing Two scored in the average range overall on both, thereby knocking himself out of the "Communication Impaired" classification category he's been in since finishing preschool. Unfortunately, as everyone who's actually *talked* to the kid for more than 30 seconds can tell, he still needs services at school, especially speech therapy.
Fortunately, the good professionals at his school, including the abovementioned speech therapist, KNOW that he still needs help. The speech therapist told me that she deliberately chose to administer a third test after scoring the first two, one that targets pragmatic language (his particular area of deficiency) with laserlike precision. That one he failed, as she'd hoped he would. Because she wanted to be able to justify continuing to provide him the services that he needs.
There's a meeting scheduled for Monday morning. The school could legally have taken that opportunity to discontinue his services. Instead, I've been informed that they will be changing his classification category from Communication Impaired to Other (because they now have to) but leaving him with an IEP and speech therapy. Moreover, the speech therapist will be using the results of that third test, the one they didn't have to administer, to create his speech goals for the next year so that they focus their efforts on his areas of greatest weakness.
His case manager told me on the phone this morning that she sees a future for him in which he's no longer a Special Ed student, but that he's not quite there yet. I agree on both counts. And I am beyond grateful that these women really do have his best interests at heart, that our relationship with them as his parents is collegial and cooperative and not in the least adversarial. Not sure how many Special Ed parents can say that. Perhaps one day that label will indeed come off him, but in the meantime everyone agrees that there's progress to be made first. Hallelujah.