- As a mom of a child on the spectrum, it was always hard to know if my child had a disability or not. The fact that public schools really do not care about a diagnosis does not help. Yes they will do evaluations and yes they will create an IEP, however they will not give you an independent evaluation unless you ask for one!
Start by asking the school based support team, and then follow up with the supervisor of psychology for your school. The CSE most of the time can tell you who that is.
- I would ask as soon as your child reaches school age.
- Be sure that you ask for an award letter vs letting them choose a provider for you.
- This can make all the difference. It is often better for you to call around and get a feel for the providers expertise and knowledge of educational programs both public and private.
- Will the provider do a school visit?
- Will the provider make educational recommendations?
Often insurance will not cover these types of evaluations especially medicaid, you can wait as long as 8 months to see a specialist.
YAI now has clinicians that can do the ADOS, and they take medicaid!
Another thing that was not around when I first suspected that my child may have ASD, were videos. The amount of videos that are on youtube and Vimeo have grown over the last five years. I remember searching for hours to try and find another child like my own.
Today many brave parents have submitted footage of their children Stimming
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stimming and expressing themselves showing echolalia http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Echolalia.
These videos are hard to watch and I remember watching some and just crying non-stop after because of the frustration and confusion that ASD causes for so many of us.
It seems like a never ending battle trying to explain to parents, teachers and even principals that ASD is a real thing and yes my child has it, and yes it is why he does not always listen or get what you are saying.
While the evaluation (IEE) may not seem important, it can make a huge difference in advocating and finding the right placement for your child.