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Old 05-06-2013, 04:19 PM
 
5 posts, read 8,908 times
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Looking for some information, comments, opinions of elementary schools in Kirkland/Redmond/Bellevue/Sammamish. My husband took a job a month ago in Kirkland area, I and my 11 year old son who has autism have not arrived yet, but will finishing our family move next month in June. since we are securing our housing now, renting more than likely, I want to make sure I pick the right elementary school.

My son will be going into the 5th grade. He is a social butterfly, loves to sing, and dance but academically he is still way behind. He was diagnosed at age two, and didnt start talking till he was seven. For the first three years of elementary school(pre-k thru 1st) he was non-social and was not making that much progress. We were in schools in KY(which are terrible) and took some time and fighting the school district before he was able to get in a school that was inclusive and had a great special education teacher.

He now is very sociable, enjoys singing and dancing, this year he did choir for the first time. He is making great strides, although not yet fully reading, his visual processing and hands on exploration of things that move(printers,fax machine, scientific thing) is phenomenal.

I am basically looking for a school that has these characteristics:

#Inclusive, doesn't have to be solely, but a school that allows a student with special needs to spend some time in the classroom with peers his age.

#Would love a school with active parent involvement, especially parents of children with special needs.

#A school that offered any type of extra curricular activity that was open to a child with autism(like choir or any other club or sport.

Thanks in advance!!

And if anyone has any extra information to share in regards to other things with any relation to autism, in the area, I would greatly appreciate any ifo on that as well
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Old 05-06-2013, 04:36 PM
 
84 posts, read 122,732 times
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I can't wait to see the replies. In a year or two we'd like to move over to the Seattle area. Our oldest is entering kindergarten and sounds like your son was at the same age. It was great reading about the great progress your son has made.
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Old 05-06-2013, 05:22 PM
 
5 posts, read 8,908 times
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Originally Posted by WAIDOR View Post
I can't wait to see the replies. In a year or two we'd like to move over to the Seattle area. Our oldest is entering kindergarten and sounds like your son was at the same age. It was great reading about the great progress your son has made.
I just hope I am not too late. My husband and I moved to KY, because we were hoping to be home owners, just started working for a major corporation, and were looking into starting a family. We are originally from San Jose, CA and all the dreams we had together just weren't coming together there, so off we went. Several years later after having my son, he was diagnosed with autism, and I would had given anything to have been back in SJ because there is little to no help in KY. But our jobs were there, we were able to own a home, and I thought, I am a pretty determined person, I can help create programs and bring attention to the lack of resources in our town. Well fast forward four years, and no change has happened.

Since the economy went into the dumps a few years back, my husband and I started to think about what we really wanted as a family, for our son and our future, and well this is what has brought us to Seattle. I have always wanted to live there since visiting a relative when I was really young, and really no state in the U.S has the perfect set up. We are done with the corporate world, and making money for the elite and few, and have focused more of our time to doing things to help others and community. We paid nearly all our debt off, and dont mind if we are never home owners again. We just want to live and enjoy everyday.

I want beauty, nature, peace, a nice walk, rain, community, life, really to me that is Seattle, or Washington for that matter. And if I cant have the perfect school for my son, I can have him near nature, near an area that always has something going on, theatre-arts, and perhaps maybe this time I will have my son in the right place at the right time.

With all the technology companies in and around Seattle, maybe they'll be a opportunity for my son with autism to live a close to self sufficent - productive life. Since getting him an Ipad three years ago, he has made great strides and my hope is that some of these companies in the future try to create jobs for those on the spectrum. I read about it, heard chatter about it, and well it doesnt hurt to look ten years ahead. Before I was so consumed by what might have caused his autism that I wasted precious time. I should have been looking into where the best place to raise him was. So much time wasted. Now I just want him to be happy, productive and active and I know I have picked the right place in Seattle.
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Old 05-06-2013, 05:53 PM
 
Location: Portal to the Pacific
8,106 posts, read 7,168,149 times
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Well, it's going to depend on a variety of factors. I would definitely take a short-term lease and do some investigating when you get here. Parents, even those with special needs, are all over the map in what they like, don't like, etc. Have you looked at each of the school district's offerings? Have you contacted their special ed contacts? Even having a conversation or two will help give you a sense of expectations. As for my experience, I live in Issaquah and my son has autism. He has an IEP and receives a comprehensive assortment of services. I've been happy with the school. He used to get some services with Lakeside Center for Autism here in Issaquah but as you probably know, those services can be quite pricy! We have met a LOT of children on the spectrum since moving here. My son's better friends also are on the spectrum too.
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