...so where was I? Oh yeah, we had Charlie tested for Covenant's kindergarten at the end of January.
[I forgot to mention that just before Christmas we had testing done through the public school that we would be in and after several hours of testing (with speech, OT, diagnostician, etc...) over 3 seperate occasions, all therapies said he is on the lower end of normal and that they didn't see any need for special help. This gave me a glimmer of hope that maybe I had been over-reacting about everything and that really he was more "average" than I thought.] The next day the admissions director called me with the results. Although I knew there would be some issues, I was not at all prepared for what was to come.
Here is a portion of an email I sent to several godly "mentor moms" in my church that I very much respect and knew would come alongside me with encouragement and prayer.
This may be a little longer than my usual emails, but hang in there with me. Today was a pretty emotional day for me. Covenant called with the results of Charlie's kindergarten testing. He didn't do so well. It is a 5 part test, but two of the parts are the main indicators for how a child will do in kindergarten. These 2 parts are number concepts and auditory processing. They like for the kids to score at least a 5 in each catergory. Charlie got a "3" in number concepts and a "2" in auditory processing. Number concepts is things like, "If I cut a cookie in half, how many peices do I have?" To which he answered "10?" I know he knows that, but the point is that it is a reflection of what is going on in his mind.
Auditory processing covers oral instruction and how it is handled. For instance, a series of instructions like, "Pick up the paper, put the pencil on the ground, and stand beside your desk." He couldn't do it. They also gave him a series of 3 words, "Apple, red, yellow" and asked him to remember them. He couldn't.
Amy (the admissions lady for Covenant) said that she doesn't have the final recommendations from the teacher and headmaster, but just wanted to give me a heads up so that we could be talking and praying about it. She is concerned that if we try it, it will be a challenging and frustrating year for him. I agree. I also know that we have 12 more years of this to go and I don't want him to be defeated and discouraged in kindergarten! He is already SO hesitant to try anything he doesn't think he can do or that will be too hard. (His poor little spirit is broken so easily and he's simply not confident.) Keith and I talked briefly through my sobbing before he left for work. We both agree that Covenant is not the best place for him this year.
We are considering where to go from here. Although I wasn't totally surprised by the results, I honestly didn't anticipate it being that bad. Especially after the public school testing put him in the normal range in all catergories. (Which did surprise me.) I really didn't think we would be looking at schooling alternatives. We both agree that public school is not an option either. Mainly for the fact that they have tested him and don't see a problem. I don't think they would address the issue, they would simply modify his work to get him by. (They told us this in our conference. Sometimes if a child is having trouble doing the math worksheet, they only have them do 2-3 problems instead of the whole thing. I think this is a cop-out and that if they get the concept, they shouldn't have trouble doing the whole sheet, even if it takes more time.) Homeschooling is an option, but honestly, I just don't think I can or would do it. I always have great intentions, but my follow through is not great. Also, I have a hard enough time teaching Will things who catches on so easily, I'm not sure how I'd teach Charlie. Plus, I want to be a cheerleader for him, not a coach. So right now, we are leaning towards hiring a private teacher. We have several ladies in our church that are certified K teachers and are home with their children now. This might be a way to help them earn some extra money and get Charlie some one-on-one attention.
My heart is broken for Charlie. He is so excited about going to school with Will and I don't know how to explain to him that he's not. My heart and mind have run that gammet of "Did I do something when I was pregnant or during delivery?", "Maybe if I had read to him more." "I should have been doing flashcards or something." Maybe we should have hired a tudor this last year." And of course, I think about his future. "Will he always struggle?" "Will he get labeled, the slow kid?" "Will he always live in his siblings shadows and wonder why it comes so easy for them and why he works twice as hard to get half the grade?" "Will he grow up feeling like a failure and like he's not good enough?" And that last one is where it gets me. I honestly don't care if he's a "C" student, I know academics are not going to be his thing. I just don't want him to struggle and hurt. I want to spare him the pain of suffering.
Sorry for the rambling, just wanted to let you guys know where we are. We are going to look into getting a full battery of tests run at Scottish Rite Hospital in Dallas. I've heard from several people that they have an outstanding program, but it takes 3-6 mos to get in. I called today and they are mailing me the patient application, so we'll get that ball rolling. I'm hoping it will give us more direction.
As you can see, this was a hard day, and just as I had hoped, the ladies fired back with Scripture, comfort, advice, personal stories, love, and hope.
We decided to wait a little while, see if Charlie matured any, then have him retested in April/May. More later...
Good helpers - December 14
5 years ago