I need some advice regarding my sons special education placement?

Question:My son is 7 years old and all academic tests revealed that he has especially advanced levels of language comprehension,mathematics,as well as logic and reasoning,highly articulate,spatial /structural pro.problem solver.Seriously I was told on two seperate occassions that he shows signs of true "Genius" On the flip side of this is the very troubling and real fact that my son is often given to mood swings,poor impulse control,skewed perceptions in social settings, bossy,critical,oppositional ,antisocial,and aggressive with peers and adults(with lack of remorse).Sadly he usually percieves others as working against him,or laughing at his difficulties,as a result he has been labeled emmotionally disturbed.his school experiences were volatile and he felt victimized when taken out of General Ed.into a dysfunctional class I have Major concerns with regard to his physical and emmotional health.advocating for his Ed. placement through IEP process any ideas? personnel@prev. site were unhelpful

Answers:
In my school district we have GT/LD (gifted-talented/learning disabled) classes for students who have areas of giftedness and areas of weakness...do you have something like that in your district?

Do NOT let him be placed into a "special education" classroom if he is academically gifted...he will typically be placed with children who are low functioning academically and his self-esteem will go out the door (I used to teach in one of those classroom where kids got dumped).

...and, not to diagnose from here, but have you had the school or a private individual test your child for Aspergers? From what you have written, it sounds as though that may be a possibility.
http://www.udel.edu/bkirby/asperger/aswh...
http://www.aspergers.com/
http://www.ninds.nih.gov/disorders/asper...
I don't really know about this, but I found a forum for parents of gifted children you might be interested in: http://www.sengifted.org/community/index...
and a website with a lot of links:
http://www.hoagiesgifted.org/parents.htm...
Good luck!
Wow, this is a difficult situation. I am a teacher who has taught special ed. students, emotionally disturbed, and highly gifted. I have noticed that some highly gifted students do have behavior issues, stemming from their own frustration at not being challenged, and being bored in class, among other things. I KNOW for a fact there are schools for gifted students like your son, and they can even deal with his frustrations as well. I teach in Denver and have a gifted/emotionally disturbed child going to one of these schools next year, after talking with his mother and telling her this would be a better place for him. In my experience, IEP's are strictly for learning/speech disabilities, but if he has been labeled as emotionally distrubed he may be able to have an IEP written for certain aspects of that. I am not totally sure. However, you need to ask about these special placement schools. He will most likely not be happy in a regular ed. classroom, and thus his behavior issues. He needs a place that will challenge him and keep him busy thinking. A dysfunctional class is no place for a highly gifted student. Talk with the school, they should do the right thing. good luck to you and your son.
i myself am a gifted student and still cannot figure out what im supposed to do and can understand your son's behavior. i changed schools in middle school and now am in high school and just hate it. the antisocial comes from the fact that very few other students are at the same level. those below him will think he is showy just because he is smarter than them. many will also try to take advantage of the fact that he has no friends and will use him to do homework in exchange for friendship, which never ends well.

the school system doesn't help AT ALL. it took me almost having a breakdown at home and a visit to my counselor to make one change, but it didn't really help with most of the problem. i find that teachers of gifted children often expect them to do things with no complaint, even if the act asked of them is stupid and pointless (to reason for my almost-breakdown was caused by my English teacher's inability to see that what she wanted was not helping, but rather hurting, my education) schools often spend millions on programs for children that are below average and need extra help, but often ignore the children that are ABOVE average and also need help, but of a different kind.

he most likely has no problems except those caused by his genius. he needs to be in gifted classes with other kids like him, not into a dsfunctional class of kids that really DO need help. get involved and do your research. you may find that he needs to be homeschooled or needs to switch schools to one better equipped to meet his needs.

good luck! i hope this helps and that your situation will get better!
Please go to www.schwablearning.org and sign up for free to post on their parent to parent message board. There are LOTS of knowledgable parents and others who are glad to help you!
I would take your son to a psychologist not affiliated with your school to have them do an independant diagnosis and offer suggestions for the school personnel. It could be that your son is not emotionally disturbed, but could have a form of autism called Aspberger's Syndrome. People with Aspberger's are usually of average intelligence and many are gifted. While this change (if there was a change) would not necessarily change his placement, it could change his goals and help give a better idea of where his behaviors are coming from. Does he receive counseling at all for his behaviors and feelings? Those services should be added to his IEP.

Unfortunately, if your son tends to be anitsocial and aggressive, he proably shouldn't be placed in a general education classroom until he has a behavior plan in place. This plan protects both your son and other students. Have you looked into the possibility of a giftedness program for him if he gets his behaviors under control? This type of a program would stimulate him more and could be 'reward' for him if his behavior changes.
Clearly, there is something goin on an emotional and/or psychological level and placing your child in an integrated classroom will be in no one's best interest. Many people who suffer from bi-polar disease and schizophrenia are brilliant in other ways. While I am not saying this is what is affecting your child, the lack of remorse , along with such clear signs of paranoia, is especially worrisome. While some of the other behaviors are similiar to what we see in Asperger's, paranoia is not one. I would strongly urge you to have him evalutaed by a child pcyshiatrist..preferably one with experience with children with severe emotional and mental health issues. Once that evaluation has taken place, you can approach the school with the diagnosis and recommendations. I would certainly suggest doing some research on your own into private schools in the area that work with children with high intelligence and severe behavioral issues. He will need to be in an enviroment that will support not only his educational needs, but his behavioral ones as well and very few public school systems have anything for that particular combination. He needs to be in a place where the staff is trained at interceding before he can hurt himself or another person. This must be addressed. To leave it or settle for less is to face the very real possibility of your child hurting another and that person bringing law enforcement into the picture. Inform the school you are having his assesed for emotional and psychological issues, ask them to do the same. Insist he have a one to one aide placed with him to ensure everyone's safety while the process is ongoing. Get all the information you can about alternate educational placements and be sure to have the school document every behavior for you to present to the evaluating psychiatrist. Once there is a clearer understanding of what is going on, use the information you have to suggest a better placement for your child. This will be a tough battle...there is a lot to do, much of it is terrfying for a parent to even consider, but your child's well being and your own you must push forward.
A couple of things I suggest..
1) Are medications to control mood swings and aggressive thoughts available? If those were under control, a public school system would not have a really good reason for keeping him out of the regular classroom. The other items could be handled with a behavior plan, too.
2) What types of ongoing counseling will my medical insurance cover? Aggressive tendencies with lack of remorse tend to become more intense as children age. Am I doing all that I can to protect myself and those around my child...who in a short time will have the strength grown man?
3) Is the school willing to provide sometime in the regular classroom with a special education aide accompaning him. The aide may not need to "hold his hand" so to speak, but could stop aggressive behaviors and removing him from the regular education class immediately-- an immediate consequence.
4) How is the special education teacher going to be supported from the district office level (usually) to meet my child's academic needs? Most of the children in these classrooms are behind...not ahead.
5) Have I read through the Parent's Rights Handbook given to me at the IEP meetings? They usually contain a section on mediation. Mediation is the next step to contest an IEP. If not, contact the Asst. Superitendent or other so-name top official for special education in my county? If no returned calls, etc within 48 hrs call the district superintendent. {please excuse my spelling}
Hi, I am sorry that you are in such a dilemma with this whole situation with schools for your child. You may want to surf a web-site that will have many answers to your questions. When surfing go to parents and, on line shopping which has many books for you to choose from which will help you. Remember also to let the educators know that you are willing to assist in any way that you can for your child's educational needs. I wish you well.
good luck
I feel for you. My son (diagnosed with Asperger's) is gifted/learning disabled. He does attend a Learning Support classroom for part of the day because he becomes overstimulated in the regular clasroom and exhibits many of the symptoms you describe. I understand that he needs quiet, but it does break my heart to think his that his gifts are ignored and that he is not stimulated enough.

You check out the Yahoo group gifted_but_learning_disabled. It has a lot of information.

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