Last year, Ryan had an aide who followed him around all day, and basically did his work for him. We didn’t know it at the time, as she was supposed to be helping him when he couldn’t see the board and stuff. But it seems as if she was helping too much. Last year, when he’d come home to do his homework, he wouldn’t even want to write his name on the top of his homework, saying he needed help.
At the beginning of this year, when they evaluated him, he was so far behind. He only could recognize 7 letters. He was basically going into first grade as a child who hadn’t had any schooling. The school helped set up a plan to get him caught up, in addition to learning braille.
This year, he’s made amazing progress, and absolutely LOVES school and his teachers. He’s very positive and happy, and enjoys learning. He doesn’t see needing extra help as a negative situation at all, and likes to go to his special classes. He’s definitely thriving.
However, he’s not yet caught up to where he should be, which leads to my conundrum. They are discussing retention, and I’m not sure how I feel about it. I’m totally on the fence right now.
Part of me says do it now, while he’s so young. I would hate to see him struggle and fall even more behind. I don’t have an issue with keeping a child back who needs it, but here comes my dilemma.
He’s a twin.
If he were a singleton, it’d be so much easier. But I’m afraid if I hold him back, he’ll lose his self-confidence. He’ll wonder why Dylan gets to go to second grade and he doesn’t. I don’t want him to lose his love of learning, and hate me later on when Dylan graduates a year earlier.
At the meeting today, we touched on this… but it was really to renew his IEP for next year. I did raise the concerns I have and asked a few questions. I wanted to know if they think it’d be possible for him to catch up fully by the end of next year, if he goes on to second grade. His teachers and the principal are going to discuss it further.
I think I’d rather give him the chance to continue to work hard and be so positive about it all, and if he’s still behind, hold him back next year.