Well, the meeting wasn't nearly as horrible as we planned for, and we think... we think... we got the bottom line straightened out. We're futzing with the different environment possibilities for Joey to try to find ways to keep him small groups with few distractions and as much in the "main stream" as possible (where his academic needs can be better met). These changes require that he have an aide, the kind that knows when to stay in the background, and when to intervene: a "lifeguard." Understanding what we wanted was easy. Figuring out how to word it in an IEP was not.
The interesting resistance we got was about the use of sign language for visual cues. There seemed to be resistance to the use of signs from the speech therapist (how odd is that?) and resistance because "combining signs and picture cues might be confusing." We thought that odd, too. Joey is a smart little guy. He knows what he can access and use at a given moment, and he does very well with signs. It helps his speech and auditory comprehension immensely. Why would adding in using pictures for certain choices (such as what type of activity he wants for a break or what object he needs for sensory issues) to using signs as prompt (such as "listen", "wait", "ready?" etc) be confusing?
We are currently going over the IEP, because it is a lot of information and a lot of goals and a lot that could be misinterpreted by the next team, and we don't know yet who will be the teachers on that team. These teachers have had all year with him, and when they have a goal, they know what they "mean." But is this written to make it clear to the next teacher? Not sure.
Ah, IEP season. Just what everyone needs to lift their blood pressure and get the cobwebs swept from the mind.