Melanie met with some school district officials one morning this past week before Whit's preschool class. The results from her testing earlier in March were in. We've been waiting anxiously to see where Whit will be placed in school this fall. We were excited to learn that she qualified for placement in a diagnostic kindergarten class. This means she'll attend a small class with a cluster of special needs children. But that class will be held at a typical elementary school in the community. Whit will have opportunities to interact with all of the children, typical or otherwise during her year of kindergarten.
This is exactly what we had hoped for. We are so grateful. Diagnostic kindergarten is by far the option that Melanie and I are most comfortable with. Whit's just not ready to be mainstreamed into a regular class yet and we didn't want her at a school without typical model children either. So this is a great fit.
At this time the school district isn't sure where or what time of day the classes will be held. We also don't know who will be teaching them. It's a lot of work to assess all the incoming kindergartners and place them properly. They're still working to see how many special needs classes they'll need and where the students are located. So we should know more specifics about that soon. Melanie suggested that Whit's current teachers, aides and therapists could move up with her. That's probably very wishful thinking, but knows?
But what matters most is that Whitney's test scores were just right for the kindergarten we wanted. They gave us a big packet of the specific results of the testing. I looked it over a bit but it's always tough to read that your five year old has the cognitive abilities of an 18 month old or a two year old. (Although, maybe that explains why she gets along so well with Liam.) Overall though, the results reflected what we observe in Whitney at home. I'm glad to see that she behaves consistently at home and school. That means she's also getting over some of the troubles she had early on in preschool. She's getting over being overwhelmed and shutting down during class. Now we're just looking forward to the exciting new opportunities that kindergarten will offer Whitney starting this fall.