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Over the past few months, several people asked about Adélie. As promised, here is an update on her journey.
Adélie started school last September, the same school as her two brothers. She was in a regular junior kindergarten class with modified learning expectations. She received additional help from an educational assistant (EA) for about half of her time at school. Because of Adélie’s reduced mobility, the EA helped her with clothing, transitions, going to the bathroom, etc.
As for Adélie’s therapies, the plan was that she could receive them on the school premises. Before the start of school, Adélie had been receiving up to 4 therapies per week. The private therapists would come to our house or the daycare: a physiotherapist (twice a week), an occupational therapist (once a week) and a speech-language pathologist (once a week). In addition to understanding her needs, two of her therapists specialize in brain injuries and their rehabilitation.
Last year, we discussed with the school about her therapies and that they were ready to accommodate her therapies. With the help of the EA, the therapists would have been welcomed on site at school and a room would have been available when needed.
However, in October, we learned that Adélie would not be able to receive her therapy treatments at school, even when the pandemic is over. The school board would not permit private therapists on school premises. It was a major disappointment for all of us, including the therapists. Especially considering that there would be no additional cost to the school board since the costs are covered privately.
The CHEO School
In early December, we discussed the situation with the treatment centre at the Children’s Hospital of Eastern Ontario (CHEO). They agreed that Adelie needed more therapy than what the school board was offering and suggested that we apply for a spot at the CHEO School. We were lucky that there was an opening in the French class, and in mid-December, we learned that Adélie’s application had been accepted!
Adélie has been attending the CHEO School since January, and has therefore been able to receive regular therapies adapted to her needs. This will be for one year and a half, since the CHEO School is a short-term program only offered through kindergarden. As such, she will go back to regular school in 1st grade. In future publications, I plan to talk about:
- CHEO School
- The importance for children with special needs to be able to receive private therapy on school premises
- The differences between School-based therapies (offered in regular schools) vs. Private therapies
Finally, I would like to thank everyone who wrote comments on the blog or Youtube in regards to Adélie’s slideshow! Many of the comments touched us enormously. As mentioned, we will save these comments for Adelie. I even plan to create for her a photo album about her journey in which I plan to add them!
That’s it for now!
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