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Input Needed on Goal and Proposed Reduction of SLP Minutes


Brooke

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My son is in 8th grade. He is Autistic and has ADHD. He has very good grades. He struggles to form peer relationships, have collaborative discussions, stay on topic, acknowledge input from others, and work to complete group assignments. This is a proposed language goal from the speech language pathologist (SLP). I would appreciate your input.

"NAME will participate in collaborative conversations with others that respect individual and group differences, apply interpersonal skills needed to maintain quality relationships, self-assess personal problem-solving and conflict-resolution skills to enhance relationships with others, accept personal responsibility in conflict situations and initiate and participate effectively in a range of collaborative discussions with minimal support (25%) support in a structured setting as measured by a teacher made point rubric and observations."

My initial thought is that it seems like too many things to throw into one goal and it should be broken up. I'm also very concerned because he currently has both 45 minutes in the special education setting and 40 minutes weekly in the general education setting with the SLP. His IEP is coming up and the SLP is proposing withdrawing the push-in minutes and meeting for 60 minutes weekly in the special education setting. She says this is because the high school SLP believes that push in minutes are stigmatizing.

I think it is probably more stigmatizing for my son not to have the collaborative conversation skills he needs to do group work and form peer relationships. I think that he needs the push in minutes so that he learns to apply the language skills in the general education setting. He is making progress with the current minutes and goals and I would like to maintain that rather than withdraw push-in support. I'm not sure how to respond to the school about the proposed goal or the proposed reduction in minutes.

 

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Hi Brooke.  I agree with you that this goal a bit much for one goal.  I would also think it would be a nightmare in terms of progress monitoring and data collection for a SLP.  I would ask specific questions such as:

1) How are you determining whether he "participates in collaborative conversations...?"  What specific skills are you teaching?  Making eye contact?  Conversational turn-taking? I think an actual skill needs to be identified in order to teach it and then collect data for it.  I would ask these questions for each of the items stated in the goal and then ask that each skill set have it's own goal and data tracking/progress monitoring.

2) What does "minimal support" mean?  I know they have given a percentage (25%), but what does this actually mean?  That he will initiate conversations 3 out of 4 times on his own? Not walk away from a conversation 3 out of 4 times?  Maintain eye contact without prompts 3 out of 4 times?  And so on for the other skill sets.  They need specificity.

Here is a link to Lisa's social skills goals:  https://adayinourshoes.com/social-skills-iep-goals/

As far as the minutes, I would make the argument that the goal is always to work toward the least restrictive environment (being able to transfer the skill set being taught in spec ed to the general education classroom).  Taking away push-in minutes and adding more to the spec ed setting is going backwards and especially shouldn't be done when he is making progress. 

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Is this group or 1:1 instruction?  My child needed social skills/pragmatics instruction.  The person we saw did 1:1 until she was at a good level to know what to do in a group & then she did group.  Finding a good group can be hard as you can't force groupmates to be friends.  In school, you can't put typical students into a special ed class.

My kids felt anything push-in would make them the target of bullies.  It was hard to work within the rules of special ed and get them the services they needed.  I can see why the school might not want to do push-in.

Is it the teacher of the SLP who will be overseeing this?  Should be the SLP.

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