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Wednesday, July 29, 2009

The Problems of Average Speech

M has been in the Early Intervention program in Pennsylvania for almost one year. That means it is evaluation time. Problem: The Intermediate Unit (where she goes for speech when she turns three) needs to evaluate her too. The same evaluation cannot be used twice in a six month period. Solution: Use a different test called the DAY-C. Problem: This is less accurate in results and not the best test to evaluate speech (or other areas of development). Bigger Problem: It combines the receptive and expressive language scores, giving a child who understands well but speaks poorly an average score. Result: M scored in the average (low average) range on this test. (In this case an average score is not a good thing because it does not accurately reflect what M is capable of.) Biggest Problem: M could disqualify for therapy through the Early Intervention. (She would likely still qualify when she turns three because a different test would evaluate her for the Intermediate Unit.) Solution: Ashley, her SLP, and Ashley's boss will write up the evaluation together to try to demonstrate M's need for therapy, especially with her diagnosis of verbal apraxia. Result: Pray, as it is to be determined. And know that Derek and I have learned a lot in the past year on how to pull words from M. We may not be therapists, but we have some skills that would benefit her in the event that services are discontinued. We are thankful for all that Ashley, and her other two teachers have taught us and her. For those of you who don't know M in real life, her speech problem is very real. It's not just a matter of her being a late talker. She had to fight to learn to speak. Now she has to learn to speak so she is understood. Apraxia is very real. It is not treated with regular speech therapy, but differently. It isn't outgrown. It can be overcome...with intense therapy.


Rachel said...

Well, I'll be praying for you all! =:) I am sure in future, M will be so pleased and proud of her hardworking, loving parents, and soooo thankful to/for them as well! =:)


Raising a Happy Child said...

I am hoping that you can continue those much needed services until Meghan turns 3. The stupid bureaucracy really stinks sometimes!

Christy said...

It just isn't fair that M could be denied services when she obviously needs them. Our prayers are with you.

The Harris Family said...

Oh how frustrating. Aubrey was a very late talker so I understand just a little how frustrating it is not to be able to understand them but I can't imagin what your family must go through. Your family's story is very inspiring and I am so happy you share it with all of us. Hopefully she will get the services she needs and we will be praying for your family.

Anonymous said...

I hope Meghan is able to continue with her therapy. It sounds like it is doing wonders for her.

Take Care

Jennifer said...

Praying for Meghan that she gets the therapy she needs. You are an amazing mom for dealing her her speech issues in such a calm and loving manner. :)

Infant Bibliophile said...

It sounds like you're a wonderful advocate for your daughter. Thank you for sharing her struggle and educating the rest of us.

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