Wednesday, September 13, 2006

Well I'm so excited. You know how I've been so stressed about what to do about my boy and school? Something's coming together.

Last Thursday night I was really stressing about it. I was seriously agitated. I had just spoken to someone (I'll not name) who I thought might be able to help, but was unable. And her discussion with me caused more doubts about homeschooling. James and I went to bed and really prayed for an answer.

The next morning I suddenly remembered a resource that I had forgotten to check out. A few weeks ago, we were at a BBQ at my brother's EA's house. My brother Ben has had this terrific EA since kindergarten. She's like a mom away from home for him. So we were all over there and talk of Jairus came up. Ben's EA tells me I should check out a program in Burlington called Talc Academy. (Don't know why it's got a C instead of a K, but it is the word talk). The lady who runs it used to run a speech camp that Ben went to for a couple weeks each summer for many years. Ben's EA highly recommended this lady and her program.

So I found the place on the internet and read about what they had to offer. I was so overwhelmed with the immediate conviction that THIS is where Jairus needs to go, that I sat and blubbered in front of my computer like a small child. It was quite pathetic.

I called as soon as I could talk normally, but got voicemail. I didn' t want to leave a message, so I opted to email, so I could get as much info across right away. I sent a lengthy email, describing Jairus and our problems trying to figure out schooling. Of course, the ironic thing here is that we've been stressing the last 2-3 weeks since finding out that Hamilton won't pay for Jairus' preschool, and saying he won't go now 'cause we can't afford it. However, I knew very well that this private program would be very expensive. But you know what? I just didn't care. At that point, I would have lived on bologna and crackers if we could just get Jairus into a program like this.
Even though I thought I conveyed the urgency of the situation, I didn't hear back. I sent this last Friday and I waited all day and then all weekend. I figured I might not hear anything over the weekend, but I was still hopeful. I decided to give her Monday, and then call first thing Tuesday morning.
Well, Tuesday morning I took off to my parents to help paint the additions they're just having finished up on their house. So I ended up calling this morning instead. Again, I got voicemail and this time left a message telling them I was ' terribly anxious' to speak to someone there.

That must have worked because the director herself, Judy, called me right after lunch. She delivered the slightly disappointing news that they'd had to alter their kindergarten program, and now it's only offered one morning a week, on Fridays. I quickly told her that was fine--one was better than nothing. Then she needed to know what kind of speech issue Jairus had. She said that they only work with a certain kind of speech delay, and she described what they did and didn't work with. By the time she was done, I was thoroughly confused. Usually, I'm pretty conversant and knowledgable about Jairus' problems, but I had to ask her "So, how do I know which one my son has?".
She asked whether or not he had problems with a) Vocabulary, sentence structure, word retrieval, grammer, pronoun use, etc. OR b) Problems with simply making himself understood.

Well, that was easy. I said b) right away. To my great relief, that seemed to be the right answer. She made me an appointment to come in with Jairus and see the speech therapist there and decide for sure if Talc Academy is the right place for Jairus. Then she told me the best news. I had been entertaining thoughts about the fees for this place to be anywhere up to $1000 a month. I know, that's ridiculous, but I was worried that it would be totally out of our range.
Jairus receives money every month through a special government program to help with any costs associated with his disability. Right now, we don't really have many of those, so that money could readily be used for this.

Guess how much the program costs?

10$ more than what Jairus receives.


Praise God.

Ok, I'm crying again.


James K said...

I hope you learned how horrible this place is before they did too much damage to your son! They are awful people who completely lie to parents to trick them into paying them to abuse their children mentally. I am speaking as a former employee who quit for this reason. Please google them on glassdoor to see employees finally speaking out. please don't ever recommend them - help save other kids!

Les said...

James, he never attended! They ended up turning him away because he was not toilet trained. I was so upset that I immediately started trying to get him trained and we worked all year....the next fall I tried to enroll him again and they still refused him for another reason....I was so frustrated that I washed my hands of the place. He has never gone to any of their programs...I'm not even sure if they still exist. Thanks for your comment!

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