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Heigh Ho

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Posts posted by Heigh Ho

  1. Of course, none of us know the whole story.


    I think that it's important to note that every individual with Down syndrome is unique, and the accommodations they need are unique as well.  So, the fact that a set of accommodations has worked for one person with Down syndrome, or many people with Down syndrome, doesn't tell us whether or not that set of accommodations is appropriate for Logan.  


    For example, people have mentioned hand cycles as the way that BSA accommodates people with physical disabilities, but a hand cycle is an accommodation that works for a very small subset of people with physical disabilities.  I can't think of a single student that I've worked with who would benefit from that particular accommodation, and I have worked with many students with physical disabilities.  


    As far as your argument that not everyone chooses to get Eagle, or follows through and gets it, legally there's a distinction between not getting something because you made a choice, and not getting it because it's inaccessible or because you're discriminated against for your membership in a protected class.  


    A hand cycle is not 'the' way, its 'a' way. In this case I described, its what the lad's physicians  recommended due to his particular disability, after the Scoutmaster showed the mom several possibilities that Paraolympians used.  Its not up to the volunters or paid employees of BSA to interpret the medical needs..they can't replace the lad's physician team.  The volunteers in the lad's unit may suggest ideas for the lad and parent to discuss, but its up to the family to decide what's appropriate.  A different scout may need a three wheeler or a quad, or different gearing..up to them to figure out what works for the area they live in, just as it is to a family of a nondisabled scout.  The BSA is not a public school .. it doesn't have teams at the local level with lists of accomodations, equipment to loan,  and expert PT and OT available for free. The family has to do some of the legwork, and in cases like this one, where no one local is able to make suggestions,  it sounds as if National may be able to offer some.  

    • Like 2

  2. Dumbed down textbooks is different than "not the latest edition"-textbooks, and a dept chair deciding to not cover part of a book is also a different issue. I stand by what I said... having the previous edition of a book doesn't doom a school to having terrible standardized test scores. It might make a few points of difference, but it's not going to take a school from performing well to performing poorly (and if a school is really concerned about obscure material, they need just 1 copy of the latest edition so the teachers can see what new obscure topic is in it and teach that topic, like the thread on the high school board about box plots... it's not like 90% of the material students learn is obscure material that changes every edition). 


    Again, I get that a few points will make some difference and that it doesn't help... I just think that having the previous edition of a book pales in comparison to having kids coming to school hungry, or tired, or distracted by whatever problems their family is having, having bad teachers, having no heating in the school, having a large percentage of kids with lead poisoning, or w/e issues a school might have (and yes, again, I get that not all schools are as lucky as to have enough previous edition books and paper and pencils and all that... but that *was* the argument... that having previous edition books was hurting poor schools, and preventing them from doing okay on standardized tests... and I'm saying that if everything else was wonderful - well-fed, healthy kids without worries, good teachers, good building with enough desks and heating and A/C and all that, that having the previous edition would be a minor inconvenience, not the ultimate test-score-destroyer). 


    Where in NY are you seeing hungry children?  This state is over the top with food support...they even have feeding stations all summer long for age 0 to 18, no questions asked. 


    where in NY are you seeing teachers that can't teach basic?  


    A/C?????  Really???


    The previous editions in my district are 10+ years old.  You bet your boots that not having the current does affect the students.  But it sounds like you only want to hear about poor districts...not us.  We are middle class, which means we don't get Title 1. Poor schools have Title  1 money and lots of grants for things like orchestra. They aren't lacking current books.  


    Sounds like a rant.

  3. DD18 needs to have 4 impacted wisdom teeth removed and we are trying to find the best time in her schedule, between final exams, dance practice/recital, college events, and planned travel.


    DH seems to think several weeks are needed as a plan for full recovery in case of any complications while the oral surgeon laughed and said a couple days would be fine as long as she wasn't planning international travel.


    Specifically, if she had the surgery (with sedation) on a Friday, are odds good that she will be up for 3 hours of dance practice by Monday evening? 


    ime, with 2 lads, the chance is zero.


    one of mine tried to do an Eagle Scout project on Sunday a.m., he was a looney tune and they just had him sit and dispense tools. He was better Monday,  but he was not up to cross country practice. 


    number two was wiser and took it a bit easier over the weekend, but he wouldn't have been up to 3 hrs of dancing or 2 hrs of CC practice either.


    they were told nothing until after the first weekend if okay'd at checkup at that time

  4. We had a special needs scout grow personally by being held to the requirements. He and his parents figured he'd get a waiver on everything he couldn't do or they didn't want to pay for....

    swimming mb..couldn't get in to the pool on his own, had never put his face in water

    hiking mb...couldn't walk too far with his physical disability and his usual walking aids

    cycling mb...couldn't pedal with his feet


    could've knocked him over with a feather when he learned he was expected to use approved accommodations..

    ...pool was accessible, and he needed to take lessons like everyone else

    ...accommodations such as wheel chair allowed, just as if he was going about his daily business...

    ...handcycle allowed


    his mother was just as shocked...she hadn't planned on taking him for swim lessons, or getting him a wheelchair, or a bike with a hand pedal. She wasn't involved in Paralympics, but the scoutmaster was....opened a lot of the world for them after they saw the videos of possibilities...  He didn't have much time left to build the muscle to earn Swimming or Biking, so ended up finding a wheel chair and getting his Hiking in.  He'll have a much better life now that he knows possibilities and a path to personal fitness. 


    Our SM was kind to son wanted to do his 20 mile hike but couldn't get another kid to do it and I was too ill to be hiking up and down all day with a full backpack, so he suggested to the SM that he could run the trail instead of walk, to shorten my time out.  Instead the SM suggested a flat trail that I could bike and take rests on while the kid and sib kept walking. Darn kid never finished his writeups, but I sure enjoyed not feeling like a patient while I was out there. 

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  5. I call BS. Yes, if you don't use the newest textbooks that are perfectly aligned with the test, you're less likely to have kids get perfect scores, but you certainly don't need the latest textbooks for kids to get good scores (as in, >90th percentile). I'm sure that tons of boardies can attest to this, since possibly most of us don't use the latest perfectly aligned textbooks. 


    Now, having slightly dated textbooks is of course an additional obstacle on top of all the other problems poor schools have, but IMO, it's one of their smallest problems (assuming they do actually have enough books in usable condition for all students and the books are less than, say, 25 or so years old and were good books to begin with).


    Ime farrar is right.  These tests include obscure material - if the dept chair decides a unit or a subuni isn't going to be taught due to low chance of being on test, the students who don't have a tutor or the right text will be caught short.  What we found is that the school was using dumbed down textbooks for some subjects, such as science, and there wasn't a snowball's chance in Hades of getting enough out of the text to grab more than a pass on the Regent's or even answer all the questions in the problem set bank...we did what eveyone else did and bought the amsco test prep books and we bought the graphing calculator so the kid wouldn't have to play 'pass the calculator' during the algebra exam and had enough experience with it to not waste test time.


    The only place we didn't see the updated text necessary was R. Global History.


    And in NY, its not poor schools that have issues as they have Title 1's the rural schools and the diverse schools...they don't have the tax base or the Title 1 funding to do the remediation they need and buy materials for the on or above grade level students.  

  6. In this area its common not to have middle or high school textbooks for math..the district is short on funding and students are below grade level in reading.  Teachers are expected to use a variety of instructional methods and actually teach, not stick to any one approach.  The first time a textbook is used is pay-for-play DE College Algebra, and the student will be buying it.  The district money that was used for textbooks appears to have been designated for photocopies. The actual day to day homework from grade 6 to A2 is a problem set printed out from various resources.  MIF is the elementary school curriculum and if the teacher isn't too good, one just hits the internet for explanations (or pulls out one's SM textbook) and extra practice as the dc aren't allowed to bring those textbooks home.





  7. There are technician jobs that will work very well with his wants...but they all require an education - 2 yr or 4 yr.  A 2 yr may not be available at your closest CC, but possibly closer to a city or industrial area.  Perhaps a job counselor or someone in your husband's network could sit down with him and tell him what's available in the area, and that would motivate the schooling.  Look at something like failure analysis or quality control tech for a car or airplane parts factory or a research center -- it requires people who have good 3D ability, the patience to manipulate joysticks, the ability to focus, science education etc.  and really not much people interaction.  Managers are used to quirky people in these areas...the two I know usually put social people on one night shift, and people who don't want to interact on another on the other night shift..everyone's happy that way. These jobs have enough intellectual that your son won't be bored, as he would in a hospital tech or service job that's fairly routine day to day. And many of them are with employers who encourage the disabled to apply and can work around their communication disability.


    as far as motivating a job search, many teens and young people are afraid they'll never get what they want if they start elsewhere, and that means action paralysis.  Parents and employers are really helpful moving them past it.  Also, being a student while working is helpful -- managers like to see people who are striving.  One has to help the student see what they'll gain from the employment. My son for ex, worked at the print shop for his college...after 2 years he had a whole different understanding of his role, and it piqued his interest to becoming very good at dealing with equipment communicating with other eqiupment...something he'd never been interested in but its essential in his field, albiet with different equipment.  So, nudging them by insisting they find something is good as they will grow personally and each time they will reflect and decide what they want to see in the next possibility.


    I too would encourage you to get a full medical workup on your son...sooner the better as you want to know what assistance he qualifies for, and if he has the genetics that means he would benefit from supplements in vitamin D or B12.  And use your good insurance before he ages out to get him counseling..yes, it will take time to sort thru counselors, but that's how its done.




  8. Peterson Directed, followed by Essential Learning Products


    cursive first, its much easier than print and its a fresh start as the student may view self as failure


    With PD, we used it until the muscle action made sense and was becoming habit - the student needs to write, not draw a letter at a time

    ELP has practical instructions on legibility vs perfection


    also important is finding the implement that gives enough feedback to the fingers ... we used a bic flair marker for a while, then eased into a pencil with a gripper and a fat barrel pen



  9. It would be a social nightmare unless she already has friends there.  My district has students who do something similar, attend when the parent is working in the area, then go back to the home country for the winter, where there is no schooling.  Tough to break in to established friendships, tough to slip right in  where the class is since so much instruction has been missed.  I would instead begin private lessons on another instrument and look for other places to play piano -- perhaps nursing home or library, then move her in to private ensembles such as youth orchestra.  If she's looking for social, 4H, scouting and so forth is a better way to fill the need.

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  10. Times have changed as far as student preparedness. My son applied to my alma mater with scores about the same as I had, but much more accomplished in ecs and more accelerated academically despite also living rural.  Very surprised to be offered much less merit money, however I was in state and he would have been out of state.  Also, many many more students with scores above 1400...I would  have been very happy to have that high a percentage in that zone, would have made finding suitable study partners easier.  

  11. what you do with your id when depends on the airport.  just follow the instructions given and keep it easy to get out. I have held id while being body wanded  and while going thru a detector as they wanted to keep line moving, other times I have had time to put it away until next check point.


    don't assume you can bring a bottle of water on the the past I've filled my empty or bought one after going thru security to get into the terminal, but now some flights have security added at the gate, so any water or greater than 3 oz fluids can't be taken on board. 


    if you bring a laptop, have it easy to remove from your carry on, it must go in bin by itself at security. bring the power cord, if you are randomly picked you may have to turn it on.  


    don't assume your carry on is going on.  it may be gate checked at flight attendant's discretion.  don't put your passport or purse in it .. put those in your personal that is going to fit under the seat ahead of you.


    follow directions, people are nice


    my underwire did not set off any scanners, this year or any other year, but dh's steel toes did.


    don't arrive at gate last minute, if there is add'l security there they can't do everyone in fifteen minutes and leave on time.


    mind the weight limit on the checked luggage, plan ahead for what you are going to remove if the scale has you just over the limit; its not worth the extra fee


    have a good time



  12. My dc enjoyed school when the classroom was peaceful and academically where they needed to be.  It doesn't matter where the desks are or what is on the walls or if there are desks or walls. It matters how many students are disengaged, and how many are aggressive about their unwillingness to participate. We've had years where adjacent desks were great - lots of collaboration, lots of discussion with other serious students on the finer points. It only takes one unwilling child or one teacher who is unable to differentiate to wreck the year for 30-35 dc. 


      I think DeVos is using language that is deliberately vague, but her point seems to be 1. dc who want to learn should have an appropriate classroom where they can learn 2. zip code shouldn't determine ability to access appropriate instruction .   She uses a lot of jargon,but being involved locally makes it easier for me to decode. I'm also thinking her tech vs industrial remarks are clearing the path for individualized instruction via laptop...that's being used in the crime-ridden poverty district near me, and it is a way out for those who would otherwise be held hostage to poor behavior and low ability teaching. My district doesn't want individualized instruction, so they use alternative school for disruptors and set the fully included curriculum for getting all children  to pass...that ensures  there is no subgroup gapping, but the achievement level is 2 grades below districts with similar demographics who use the grouping by instructional need...and the wealthy just use the multiple study halls to self-study or take the AP online classes.  The 60 minutes interview was remarkable..the interviewer had no problem with depriving the children who went to charters of funding, saying it was theft from those who didn't switch. That is the crux of the issue...those who are not from dysfunctional families are not seen as deserving of academically appropriate instruction. DeVos is saying they are, but doesn't have a PC way of saying or doing. The taxpayer of course wants ROI, and some of them do want public school to end after 6th grade level is acheived.  Me, I'd like to see a national vote.  I'll bet the loudest don't represent the majority, just based on the number voting with their feet in order to get their children to a place where they can learn at their instructional level.

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  13. I would rethink the amazon...a mile away to get a box isn't a big deal.   think instant soup, oatmeal, annie chun, mac-n-cheese, backpacker meals, crackers/cheese, single serve tuna.

    In the meantime, convenience mart for eggs to hardboil, yogurt, fruit, milk.

    Is there a campus bus route to grocery store?


    Why not grab a breakfast sandwich on the way to class? 

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  14. I think teachers are great and deserve more pay, but I don’t know any teachers regularly working 60-70 hour weeks. Seriously, a 70 hour week is working 7-5 with no breaks every single day of the week including weekends. Hardly anyoneMa regularly works 70 hours a week in any profession. I asked my mom (a public school elementary teacher) and she said no one at her school works even close to that much.


    Same here.  Work to clock is the rule. The contract specifies how compensation for meetings is to occur, and planning periods as well as professional time are part of the work day.  My ele. friends have a daily 45 min planning period, daily 45 min for prof, and teaming varies - some years its 30 min some more.  The work day is 7 hrs for ele, and that includes lunch.  Middle and high school do not teach more than 4 periods, have 1 period for lunch, and the other 4 are professional periods. They can bump salary by teaching a fifth period, afterschool tutoring, teaching nights and summers, working as staff for ecs/sports.  Some moonlight as volunter FD (tax bennies) or adjuncts (cash, post-retirement income) or run their own business (farm, auto, accounting, whatever their skill is).  To put it into perspective, my neighbors who retired 12 yrs ago make 75k each as retirees, and pay 400 a month each for golden medical.  As newlyweds and new hires, they had help from their parents for housing and did same for their dc. The negotiated compensation is loaded heavily for long term and for retirement, and is very light on salary for first 8 years (starts at 53k).  Oh, Master's is paid for by the district, numerous weekend programs.  Private industry in this area has nothing like it...most people can't even get a few hours shift change so they can travel to the city to do a master's that will be reimbursed at 5k per year (that's nothing compared to what grad credits cost). Private industry did not give raises during the recession, while public service rec'd their contracted wages (that is typically 4.5% grid raise annually)..  needless to say, we don't have a lot of people leaving teaching early, most will take a few years off for dc, then return to full time. and that is also not available in private industry. Currently job openings are in more rural areas, and in the more dangerous city schools...turnover very low in desireable locations.

  15. Oh, heck no!  Plate Tectonics, which is pretty much THE basis for much of Earth Science (the science underlying volcanoes, earthquakes, hot spots, mid-ocean ridges, continental drift, mountain builiding etc etc etc) was not accepted as standard till sometime in the 60's (believe it or not), as that's when the scientific tools were available to measure the forces that proved the theory, and I'd bet like with most things, the textbooks lagged a bit after that.  I would never use an Earth Science book that old!


    I'm not suggesting he go cover to cover, just the info that is currently relevant and omitted in the new texts.  

    Unfortunately the newer texts leave out many many details that were covered in the older texts, especially those that require math.

    And since he has time, his lads may actually enjoy seeing how certain topics have evolved over the years.

    We'll have to disagree about the value of older knowledge.  On my end, my dc have found it handy in understanding some of the older poetry, and of course the world views of people in the time period.

  16. go to bike store...the 24 inches just aren't right in the distance between seat and handlebar. you want something designed for a gal, like a Trek hybrid.  I'd look at craig's list for one a teen or college student bought a while back and is lightly used.   Upgrade if you decide you are in to it.

    • Like 1

  17. Bride is very sweet ,, just not as experienced in the culture of US weddings. 



    They wanted a really simple wedding. Bride's mother wanted a fancy wedding. They are doing a fancy wedding and consulting me and internet websites, not doing it on their own. I was just here checking my own experience with the Hive. The invitations have not gone out yet. Please save the snark. 

  perhaps will be helpful.  what they want is 'cocktail attire'.  casual would be no jacket, and yes sundress.  One does not indicate dress code by writing it out, one indicates by the formality of the invitation, and the venue choice plus time for the wedding and the reception. So, you have a 3 pm wedding, reception to follow and its not in a casual place like a beer hall, so most guests will go cocktail attire.  There will be people going casual because that is all they have.



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