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PostPosted: Wed Jun 25, 2008 11:44 am 
I suspect my youngest has mild aspergers, but because he is a high achiever his current school refuse to accept this. He has been seen by ed psychs and the last one said that we were to make the decision as to whether he had aspergers - thanks a lot! :x We went away with lots of lterature and we think he does and we also think he doesn't (sorry if I'm not making any sense) and I'm really confused. He has weak social boundaries and as such has no friends, takes everything literally and has poor concentration, however still manages to finish all of his work and is close to top of the class! :?

He is due to start as a chorister in September and we are quite worried that he will not be able to sit still for long periods of time, but we decided not to tell the school of our thoughts on him because until we say he has aspergers then it is not officially recognised. Of course if they flag up any issues we will tell them our thoughts. Anyway, do you think it is advantageous to let a selective independent school know that he has aspergers so they can take it into consideration when he sits his entry test, or is it better to keep quiet as they may be prejudicial against him? I know state schools cannot do this, but independent schools can do what they want! :roll: I'm asking this now as if the choristership isn't working we will need to find an alternative quite quickly.


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PostPosted: Wed Jun 25, 2008 8:23 pm 
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Joined: Wed Mar 05, 2008 11:58 am
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Hi Tipsy

With regards to making a diagnosis, I believe that this can only actually be done by a psychiatrist, which may be why the ed psych was reluctant to do so. We found the "Australian Scale for Asperger's Syndrome" really helpful (try googling it). My son is very bright and also close to top of class so I wouldn't necessarily consider this an indication that he doesn't have Aspergers.

Of course, Autistic Spectrum conditions vary enormously in their severity and although someone may have many of the characteristics they may not warrant a diagnosis.

As to whether or not to mention it to the school, I think you need to consider firstly whether the school would be able to meet any special needs that your son may have (even if it's just an awareness of the difficulties and having understanding teachers). Is there anything in the schools prospectus or on their website about help for special needs? If the school were prejudiced against your son because he had special needs then it's probably not the right school anyway.

I think that there are a lot of children in mainstream and private schools who have mild Aspergers but go undiagnosed and how well they get on will depend very much on the attitude of the school.

My personal feelings are that you need to be honest with the school about your concerns from the beginning. This is the only way that you will find the school that is right for your son. We moved our son into the state sector at 11 because he had quite severe special needs and it is easier to access the help from within the state system - as you quite rightly say, private schools can do what they like.

Just one final thought, how would your son cope with boarding, particularly as he has difficulty with the social side of things? My son certainly needs the comfort and support of a home environment especially after a bad day at school.


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PostPosted: Wed Jun 25, 2008 9:43 pm 
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Joined: Mon Mar 05, 2007 6:27 pm
Posts: 269
Location: somewhere in kent
Hi,

my son, Chrostopher has been diagnosed with Aspergers. This diagnosis
was made by a phycologist and a speech therapist, we were refered by our G.P . We were given the
diagnosis the same day as our first appointment.

Prior to diagnosis, I had read a lot of info re this on the web. I felt that from what they said, that they were descibing Christopher.

I have no doubt that an official diagnosis has been of great benifit to him.
He said he feels better, now that he understands why he feels different.

Christopher coped well at his small village primary, with only eighty children. His new secondary school (a grammer) was a different propersition. His problems seemed magnified. His school has been fantastic. They are understanding and accomodating prviding a secure environment for him. His world seems much more frightening than ours.

Perhaps if you do suspect aspergers, you too could ask your G.P for a referal, at least then you will know definately what you are dealing with.

Regarding the selective independent. Christopher went to pre prep/prep
until age 9. I stand to be corrected, but I took the veiw that although they claimed to be selective, that was to show parent that they would not take just any child. However in practice they were in it for the money and took
all standards, in fact there was a higher number children having additional
tuition for special needs (at extra cost) than there were children without special needs.
It was a teacher at his local village state school that said it was possible that Chritopher had Aspergers, and indeed he was right.

Good luck

Cindy


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PostPosted: Thu Jun 26, 2008 8:34 am 
Regarding boarding he has started this term in his current school and is doing well although still has no friends. He still wants to remain a boarder. I know you are right about letting the school know but as this is a probationary year I'd rather wait and see if they flagged something up rather than me putting negative ideas in their mind. His current school don't even believe he has it, and if he doesn't then (although I feel something's not quite right), I could jepordise his chances.
Thanks for the advise - I have a lot to think about! :?


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PostPosted: Thu Jun 26, 2008 9:10 am 
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Joined: Mon Mar 05, 2007 6:27 pm
Posts: 269
Location: somewhere in kent
Hi,

I hope you think more about a formal diagnosis, as the school does not need to know this information until/if you want to tell them.

In the mean time it is a shame to think of your son not having any friends.

Christopher had this problem, in common with a lot of children.
I approached the school about it (the private one) and they put a bench in the playground which they called the buddy bench.
Children were told that if they were lonley they could sit on it during break times, and others children would then recognise they needed a buddy . Christopher did sit on it, and luckily it did help him and others to develope friendships.

In addition the school said that he could take in something to play with at playtime, like a card collection or such like, this gave him something in common with the others and something to talk about. Unfortunately this only worked until the little devils started taking things from each other.

take care

Cindy


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PostPosted: Thu Jun 26, 2008 9:28 am 
I did want to send him in with cards but as he loses eveything and other kids were hiding clothes and equipment I decided against it, as I wouldn't know if it was him just losing stuff or the other kids. I can't wait for him to leave this school. I don't know how things will turn out in his next school but being awarded a choristership has boosted his confidence so much. I just wish he wouldn't sing 24/7- its driving me demented! :roll:


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PostPosted: Thu Jun 26, 2008 1:23 pm 
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Joined: Wed Mar 05, 2008 11:58 am
Posts: 181
The friendship issue is quite difficult at the age your son is at. Other kids are very tuned in to the fact that someone is a bit 'different' but not emotionally mature enough to empathise with their situation, so they tend to avoid or bully - horrible! This has improved dramatically as my son has got older and has been considerably better since he has been at grammar school. We have found that the key to this is common interests. Over the years we have gone from Beyblades to Pokemon, Yu gi oh and currently it's Magic the Gathering. Boys don't "chat" the way that girls do so conversations tend to revolve around their interests and being able to join in that helps enormously. I know you're concerned about things going astray - my son loses everything but I've given up worrying and just tend to replace things now (unless they're really expensive).

I can understand why you're reluctant to tell the school about your concerns as I was in exactly that situation when my son took the entrance tests to his prep school. At the time we didn't have the Asperger's diagnosis, just a diagnosis of dyspraxia and I chose not to tell. However, a girl in my daughter's year with some undiagnosed special needs did tell the school and they were quite happy to take her. The school very quickly noticed that my son had difficulties and they were the ones who persuaded me to seek some help. I do think it would probably be better for your son, and easier for the school, if you were honest with them from the outset. You don't have to mention Asperger's, just explain some of your concerns to them. It could create a bad atmosphere if they later find out that you didn't make them aware of all the circumstances.

A good school will not turn your son away because of this and it sounds as though he can cope quite well in a mainstream school. My experience has been that on the whole the teachers are very understanding and helpful and having the diagnosis has been really beneficial for my son. I can't remember where this quote is from but it's very true that the diagnosis "is not a label, but a signpost".

If his singing gets too much for you I would willing swap him with my daughter - she also sings 24/7 but with an ear piercing tone and a drawling American accent :evil:


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PostPosted: Thu Jun 26, 2008 1:29 pm 
Thanks for the great advice Sam's mum. What is this american accent all about!!! :? Having not seen my son in 2 weeks he has started singing all the west end musicals with an american accent! Of course we can't tell him toshut up because "he needs to practice"! :roll:


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PostPosted: Mon Jul 14, 2008 8:01 pm 
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Joined: Mon Jul 14, 2008 7:33 pm
Posts: 107
Location: medway
you need a diagnosis i feel, our daughters was done by a peadatrician, who she sees every 6 months,
a diagnosis will help you with your claim for DLA, this can be a big help in giving you extra money to help with his needs, chances are the next school wont recognise a diagnsosis on your say so, they will expect documentation to back this up!
also, conditions like aspergers have to be declared on a driving licence. so a diagnosis is important,.


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PostPosted: Tue Jul 15, 2008 11:00 am 
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Joined: Thu Nov 08, 2007 9:57 pm
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