18 January 2010

Evaluation Part Two: Zeke

During Deacon's initial evaluation, I mentioned to the therapist how I was more concerned about Zeke's speech than Deacon's, and asked if she had any ideas of what I could do to get him some help. She said I could about it one of two ways. I could either call his pediatrican at the clinic and see if she would be willing to write him a referral for evaluations/services based on my request. This, she said, could one of two ways as well. The ped could either say, "Sure!" and give me a what I ask for, OR (and this is the more probable answer I was told) the ped would say something along the lines of how the military doesn't like to shell out the money for services when the Alaska gov't has so much of it, and we can get services that would be free for everyone if we go through the Alaska school system. The other option is to just go through the Alaska school system myself.

I said to the therapist that Zeke isn't in the school system, so how could we do it that way? She told me that he's old enough to be in school out here (which, he is) and that I could enroll him and go from there. I told her how I had tried to enroll him in preschool but he's not potty trained and no 3-year old class was willing to take him untrained. She looked a little surprised that he wasn't trained, but then smiled and told me all about this wonderful program they have out here for children with all sorts of developmental delays.

Basically, this program (from what I was told) will evaluate Zeke, then place him in a classroom with a team of teachers/therapists who will focus on his main problem areas. Plus, there will be other children in the classroom so he'll get to socialize and be in a school-type setting. When I brought up the potty-training issue again, she said (rather excitedly) that his not being trained yet might help him get in the program, and they will help work on that with him in school. Wow.

So, when she came back out the day after Deacon's second evaluation (to go over the evaluation results with me), she brought an application for this service for me to fill out and fax in to get started on getting Zeke some help too. We filled it out, Josh brought it to work and faxed it for me, and I made the follow-up call to make sure they got it. A few days later I got a call back to set up an appointment, and off we went.

The evaluation went well enough. The woman who performed it said at the end that Zeke is very difficult to understand and will almost definitely qualify for services, but he has to go through further evaluation first. Like Josh's sister said, that's a little less definitive of an answer then I was hoping for. My guess, though, is that the initial evaluation is just their way of weeding out the hyper-sensitive crazy parents from the parents with legitimate concerns. Now it's been determined that we have legitimate concerns. And this is pretty much where Zeke's story ends. As we were leaving his initial eval, I was told that their secretary would call me to set up a second eval. She said they it probably wouldn't be until the second half of this month because they were booked solid with evals the first half. We're still waiting for the call.

Now, I'm pretty patient, and I know they're legitimately busy, so I'm trying not to be all "when are they going to call? what's taking so long? maybe I should call them and remind them we're waiting over here?" But what's making that hard is that since Deacon is seeing a therapist, he's pretty much in the system, and is in line to be evaluated for the same program Zeke is. Apparently they like to get things going for the kids really early, so 90 days before his 3rd birthday is when they'd like to see Deacon for the eval that Zeke just had. And when Deacon's therapist was here last week, I filled out the same application I had filled out for Zeke last month, and we pretty much have an evaluation date set. So I asked Deacon's therapist if she would sort of mention Zeke when she called again about Deacon. I feel a little bad about it, but I really would like to get Zeke's ball rolling a bit faster than it is right now.

On the plus side though, I was able to get in contact with EDIS in Germany (the service we used with Zeke on his speech when we were out there) and their new coordinator emailed me all of Zeke's old paperwork. Isn't she fabulous? So now, whenever I do get a call to schedule Zeke's next eval, I will have his paperwork to either email them ahead of time or bring with me, so they can see what we've done before.

So, there you have it. Deacon's meeting weekly with a therapist to work on his listening and speech skills. Zeke is waiting on a second eval with the school system for placement in a classroom for his speech delay (as well as his refusal to potty train - because yes, he does refuse to go on the potty). And I'm just hoping that it all falls into place well before Omi gets here, if only because I don't want to have 3 in diapers at the same time.


Julie the Army Wife said...

Daniel is in the same pre-school program here. It is a great program and when he started he was also not Potty trained. I hope they will get back to you soon so they can get things going with him.

Ells said...

I can see how you would be impatient - hope they call soon!

Linda said...

I'll be praying that things move speedily along.


Childress Family said...

Wow, Beth. That's a lot. You're really something navigating all this and recently moved to AK, AND pregnant! And you do it all with grace. I'll be praying for you and the family and the whole process with the boys.

Anonymous said...

Hope you get the call soon - thinking of you:)

JStar said...

Hey Beth, I think you are doing the right thing by having the boys evaluated and getting them whatever help they might need. You're doing a great job navigating through the system! Keep us updated!

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