Wednesday, June 14, 2006

Tonight was a huge night for us. It was the kick-off for a new stage in Lowell's life. We had parents night for Lowell's new Autism Day Treatment program that starts up next Monday. It will run 5 days a week, 4 hours each day. Up until now he has been getting treatment through the school district, which has been fabulous. However, we found out about this day treatment program and couldn't pass up the opportunity to try to get him enrolled. We also thought he is so receptive right now and seems ready to increase the intensity. He will continue to get treatment through the district as well a few afternoons a week.

The day treatment program consists of 5 kids, all between the ages of 2-3 years old, all with a medical diagnosis of Autism. They were evaluated and hand picked by an Autism "guru" in our area, Sheila Merzer. She's been working in the field since 1972. Tonight she mentioned that all the kids were "high functioning" Autistic, which is great to hear! There are two mental health specialists, an occupational therapist, speech therapist and music therapist all working with the kids on a daily basis. So basically it's a 1:1 student to staff ratio. Can't beat that! There will also be two graduate interns as classroom assistants. We are so pleased that Lowell is going to be in such good hands.

This is going to take some time for us all to adjust to the new schedule and having Lowell gone for so much of the day, but it seems like the best thing for him. As his parents we feel we want to give him the best support that we can and really feel that this is the help that he needs. We are very excited to see what wonderful, creative, innovative strategies they come up with, what progress he makes and hopefully watch him flourish.

They gave us this social story to work with him on over the weekend.

Exciting times!!! I'll be back to post more after his first day on Monday:)

4 comments:

Lisa Boston said...

Kari - I can't wait to hear how it goes next week! I'm really excited for Lowell - this program sounds fantastic. Let's get Will, Lowell and the little ladies together soon! Lisa Boston

Sam I Am said...

Exciting! I stumbled upon your post and saw you were a Minnesota mom too. Good luck with Shelia M. Our pediatrician referred her to us over a year ago, but when I talked with her, it sounded like our insurance (Aetna, SUCKS :) wasn't covered. Would love to hear how your program goes. Wishing you the best on Monday! Laura

Kristin said...

That is SO exciting!! I cant wait to hear how he does today - i'll definitely be checking for an update! Something like that sounds perfect for our autistic kiddos... i'm so thrilled that you found such a wonderful option for him! :)

Robert P said...

This is great, so much better than the hour-long sessions that our local, "world-renowned" place offers.