Before I left for my England trip, I had posted about our new attempts at schooling for Tehilla. We had wanted to send her to Gan Safa (Language Development Preschool) and had been sent for a speech evaluation. I wrote how the evaluation had been completely unsuccessful. Tehilla shut down and refused to speak during the entire appointment. She pointed to the pictures and showed her cognitive and understanding abilities, but only said a few sentences during the last ten minutes of the appointment.
I received a call from the speech therapist who conducted the evaluation. She was calling to inform me that she had analyzed her notes and determined that Tehilla's speech and understanding were perfectly age appropriate and that she was recommending Tehilla for regular schooling and some additional speech therapy and did not see any of my concerns.
I tried to reason with the speech therapist that Tehilla was not cooperative and therefore the evaluation couldn't possibly have been successful. But this was not an argument that I was going to win. She told me that the little bit that she saw was enough and that no one would approve Tehilla for Gan Safa.
It's funny how you really want your kids to be able to succeed in the most mainstream setting, but when you know that there is something going on, you have to fight for your child to be deemed as having a problem.
Tehilla is being sent for an evaluation by Hitpatchut Hayeled (Child Development Center) that will have several different professionals, such as a physical therapist, a speech therapist, a pediatrician and possibly more people, evaluating her at the same meeting. That evaluation is in 3 weeks and we will see what they determine and what their recommendations are.
In the meantime, we have registered Tehilla for a regular preschool in our neighborhood. I have met with the teacher and gave her a little background. She seemed up to the challenge and genuinely kind and interested. We will also be applying for Tehilla to receive a medical shadow and I will have to train all of the staff in the basics of symptoms of heart failure and caring for Tehilla.
It's possible that a regular preschool is best for Tehilla, and that with speech therapy, that will be all that she needs. We have no choice but to find out. Alternatively, if her teacher feels that there is a problem, there are systems set up, that she can receive help within the school. We will have to wait and see.