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So... on Wednesday Ellie's personal aide called in sick and no one told me. I didn't find out until I picked her up that afternoon. She was pretty much on her own all day. Thankfully, she did really well and only really needed help in the bathroom and at lunch. We were lucky that Abbey was able to help her.
At first I wasn't sure whether to be upset that they didn't tell me or proud that Ellie did so well they didn't see a reason to. I was thinking that maybe this meant she wouldn't need a full time aide next year. (it is our ultimate goal that she won't need any extra help at all in a few years)
Then yesterday her aide called in sick again. This time someone on the school staff was able to fill in. TOTAL DISASTER!! I'm not exactly clear on the details of what happened. All I know is that I was called yesterday afternoon and told my little girl was in hysterics and it might be best if I came to get her.
When I got there her casts were both wet. She was still crying. (20 minutes after the phone call) Her teachers told me she hadn't said a word all day and had been hiding out during free time.
One of her classmates told me that she had helped her during lunch because the aide wasn't there but Ellie didn't want to eat.
I had been told in the morning that this person filling in would be with Ellie all day but aparently she got called into another classroom for the last couple of hours. I wasn't able to talk to her to get the full story and Ellie isn't exactly shedding any light on it.
Her teachers and the school nurse were all very concerned and appologetic. I don't blame them at all for what happened. I'm just confused and concerned. Clearly we need a better back up plan.
We've been trying for weeks now to schedule meetings to make plans for next year. Coordinating everyone's schedules has been a nightmare.
I'm just feeling kind of overwhelmed with it all right now. I guess I just needed to vent.
Okay I'm done now. If you read this whole thing you deserve a cookie.
Thanks ladies. I'm feeling better about it now. Finally got the service meeting scheduled for this week. Hoping it actually happens this time.
Nicole... I agree with you about Public school. That's why Ellie's actually in a private school. We pay extra out of our pocket to cover her aide's salary. She is a wonderful aide. We love her. This was the first time she had been absent all year. And we haven't had any major issues with the school until now. Usually they bend over backwards to make sure Ellie gets what she needs. I'm just trying to chalk this all up to a huge miscommunication.
I think the issue now is that we're in a bit of a transition spot. We all want Ellie to be doing more on her own but knowing just how much to expect from her on any given day is a real challenge. As you read from my first post, some days she does fine and others not so much. And as much as we love her aide and we want to make sure Ellie has the support she needs, the money is a big factor. We can't afford to keep her full time for 12 more years!!
Ellie is very lucky that you can cover that. Perhaps in the future she can call you if she is going to be out directly so you can see if Ellie is having a good start to her day or not then you can choose what is best for her at the moment. We all have bad days and when something as important as your aide is gone it can go down hill fast and having two days without her in a row must have been scary.
I think you're right Nicole. Looking back on it, she didn't have a great morning that day. And they had an assembly first thing at school so her routine was thrown off. Plus she's never been good at adjusting to new people. Having the substitute probably actually did more harm than good.
Anyway... we had the service meeting this morning and all went well. We now have a plan in place for when her aide is out. I will be called first thing and will get phone/text/e-mail updates throughout the day. If she needs more help then I can go in and stay with her. If not then no substitute. It's not worth introducing a new person who won't be consistently with her. I'm just sooooo happy we all agree on this.
Plus I got to meet her 1st grade teacher!! She's new to the school this year so I don't know her well but she has lots of expirience with special needs kids so I think she'll be a good fit. She's even offered to let us spend some time with her and in the classroom before school starts so Ellie has some time to get to know her before the added stress of classmates and a new routine.