I've struggled quite a bit with what to do for Drew this summer in terms of therapy. What does he need? Who can provide it? What is he eligible for?
The unfortunate thing is that now that he is on an IEP he is not eligible for Extended School Year services. In order for our school district to provide summer services, we would have to demonstrate that Drew would have a significant reduction in his current performance level by not having services in the summer. That obviously isn't the case, so he isn't entitled to any school based services. (The reason being that all kids regress some during the summer months, and special needs kids should not be subject to services that peer students are not, unless the special need student would regress more than a peer. Basically, the summer months are not a time to "catch up" because it isn't fair to peers. Blah. Blah. Blah.)
So, we're left in this little area of doing well, but trying not to let the summer months lead to a large reduction in speech and language. So, what is right? Luckily we were informed about a grant that is provided through Drew's Preschool specifically for deaf and hard of hearing children. Drew was accepted to the grant program and will receive six hours of auditory therapy this summer. We're really excited about this formal therapy.
Other than the six hours of formal therapy, Drew's Dad and I signed Drew up for the preschool summer reading program through our local library, which guides us through reading specific books designed for Drew's age group. Some are pre-readers, some are letter and number books, and others are stories. Some come with questions for discussion to work on understanding of key concepts in the stories.
Other than that, what are we doing? We're having fun. We're going to relax. We're going to enjoy the summer months. This is the first summer where we've felt like we can just relax and that everything is going to be fine. That's a first for us. The past summers have been filled with CI activation - and all the appointments that go with it, therapy and IEP battles. We're looking forward to just being a normal family this summer!