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Wednesday, June 3, 2015

Journey with Josiah {9}

It's been awhile since I have made a "Journey with Josiah" post.  If you follow my blog or Facebook, you have probably seen that we moved to Nederland, Texas in September of 2014. It has been absolutely amazing and I thank God daily for bringing us here.  One of the things that I thank Him for is the positive affects that I have seen in Josiah since we moved.  There have been many contributors to the change we have seen in him but I would say that the most positive one was starting preschool at Learning Hands which is at Hillcrest Baptist Church where Jordan is now the pastor.  I have blogged about our decision to not homeschool at the moment so I won't go into all of that again, but I will mention that when we first made this decision, I was a little bit nervous to say the least.  I think it is hard for any parent to send their child to school for the first time but especially for a parent who has a child with a special need.  But when I met Josiah's teacher for the first time,  I immediately had a peace from God sweep over me.  I just knew it was right.  And it was!  Mrs. Ballew was the perfect balance between challenging Josiah but also being patient and understanding with him.  He was so excited to go to school each morning! I am so thankful for "the village" that God has provided for us here to help raise our children.  And I was so proud of my Josiah as he walked across the stage at his preschool graduation:

Over the past few months, I have been getting everything lined up for Josiah to attend kindergarten in the fall.  There are four elementary schools here in Nederland and where we are currently renting a house puts us in the zoning for Langham.  I had heard really good things about Langham and how well-equiped and trained their teachers are to incorporate autistic children into mainstream classrooms.  They also have a fantastic special ed. program in place from what I have seen and heard.   We had our first ARD meeting yesterday and I was very pleased with the IEP that was presented for Josiah.  Several weeks ago, I took Josiah to meet with the diagnostician and the speech therapist at Langham. He was then referred to a psychologist in Houston whom the school uses for all of their official evaluations. I was so very impressed with Dr. Wood.  He set the whole day aside for Josiah and Josiah loved him.  Dr. Wood sent a very detailed 26 page report to the school and Josiah's support team used this report, their own observations and questions that Josiah's PreK teacher answered along with questions that I had answered to come up with an IEP (individual education plan) for Josiah.  Josiah will start off in a mainstream classroom and he will receive special services like speech therapy on the side. I feel very confident that Langham will provide a great support system and education for Josiah.  I prayed that God would give me peace about the IEP presented at the ARD meeting if it was what He wanted for Josiah.  And that is exactly what God gave me.  I left knowing that God was placing Josiah exactly where he needed to be on this journey.

The following pictures are from Josiah's first visit to Langham, kindergarten registration, and Josiah's evaluation with Dr. Wood:

I truly believe that God has been working a miracle in Josiah since the day he was born when we thought we had lost him during the delivery.  It has been quite an amazing journey so far and I'm so thankful that God has been there all along walking it with us.  I can't wait to see what all else God has in store for our Josiah!

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