Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Getting Ready For School

No, you read that title right. Yes, it's the middle of summer, so don't check your calendar thinking time flew by faster than you realized! Judith is starting a special class in exactly 1 week for some other things that are going on, and now we're working to gather everything she's going to need.

When we wrote her IEP, we worked on an individualized health plan that acts kind of like a rider (but kind of functions like a 504 plan, just carrying more weight since it's attached to the IEP), and we have a list of accommodations in there that Judith's teachers will need to follow. Since she's only in preschool, and it's only 1 day a week right now, there aren't a ton of things that need to be covered. Next year, though, as we transition to kindergarten, the accommodations are certainly going to increase and some will need to be changed.

But I digress. For those that know me in real life, you know I tend to be a bit of a pack mule when it comes to going anywhere, particularly with Judith in tow. I've certainly worked on that, and have improved with some of the day-to-day stuff, but for other things, I always tend to lean more toward being over-prepared, just in case. Since this is Judith's first formal schooling experience, I'm understandably a bit nervous and anxious about how the day is going to go, and want to make sure I don't forget something that she's going to need.

About a month ago, I got our team to write a prescription for a new spacer so I could leave the spare in her backpack in case she would need it. Getting an extra inhaler wasn't an issue, because I always keep 2 backups in the house in case of an emergency. Since Judith is still pancreatic sufficient, we don't have to worry about sending enzymes with her, nor do we have to worry about the staff being trained to administer them. They're used to and able to administer rescue inhalers for kids with asthma and other respiratory conditions, but the enzymes could have been a potential issue if we were on them. But the point is moot since we're not. Medication-wise, we're set. All I have to do is label everything, then toss it into her backpack so we're ready to go.

I have a bunch of new water bottles for her to carry with her, and they're all leak proof. I remembered that I'm going to have to send a couple cans of pediasure with her every day, and a spare outfit in case of accidents. I'm planning to get another travel toothbrush holder after seeing a pin on Pinterest showing how you can use it as a travel straw caddy (and I must say it works like a charm!) so Miss Picky can have the "bendy" straws that she likes.

The last thing that I realized I need to send is the Teacher's Guide to CF that the CFF publishes. Her health plan does detail certain aspects, and I know a few things are doubled on both documents, but the odds of Judith's teachers having experience with another child with CF are pretty low. I know how overwhelming it can be when you have a child come into your classroom with a complex medical condition, and all of a sudden you have a huge list of accommodations to remember, so I'm hoping the guide will help by giving them a quick document to look at if they are unsure about something.

Judith is really excited to be starting! For over a year, she's made comments about the school bus, saying how she wants to ride it, and now she's going to get her chance. She has some hard work ahead of her, but I'm hoping that this class will help eliminate some of gaps that she has with same age peers, and she'll be better prepared for kindergarten in the fall of 2016.

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