Yesterday was our Son17's PPT for this year. He is wrapping up his sophomore year in high school and heading into his junior year. And we faced a very tough decision.
Son17 may be able to attend college when he graduates. We would like that to be an option for him if he is capable and if he so chooses. But he struggles so much with executive functions around organizing and managing materials and information. He is also still immature socially and emotionally. So how do you make school just a bit easier and also give a kid a chance to grow a bit?
We decided to extend his high school to five years rather than the traditional four. As some of you may know, kids with special needs are entitled to attend school till the age of 21. Well, he won't be there that long. That would be six years. But we hope the one extra year will spread two year's worth of credits out over three years and make it much easier for him to manage the work load.
But what a brutal decision! To alter the course of your kid's life in that way is not an easy choice. We spent a lot of time talking with different folks who know Son17 and/or who have a lot of experience in special education. We also spent a lot of time discussing it with him before the meeting, discussing options and making sure he was not so opposed to the idea that it would seem like a punishment of some type. But surprisingly, he was all in favor of the idea long before I became convinced. He really wants to make good grades and feels the lighter course load will make that much more likely for him.
We're keeping our fingers crossed for just such a result.