Questions about the back to school checklist.

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KWifler
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09 Feb 2014, 2:16 am

Okay, so I'm sure all those things to do in the checklist are important and exactly what I should be doing.
On most of the * points I am left wondering who and what and where and how do I find them and talk to them?

sg33 wrote:
* Get an advocate on your local disability rights activism group to help you plan a reintegration strategy.

No idea.
sg33 wrote:
* Gain at least one ally on your school's staff, preferably one with disability competency.

I can't say I would know how to judge this.
sg33 wrote:
* Contact your local AS support and service organization and ask them for personal references for educational assistants, as well as asking for names of anyone on the school staff or faculty who is well-versed in AS issues.

I've been searching for nearly ten years. I think it's time I get help to figure out who to get help from.
sg33 wrote:
* Get appropriate AS-related accommodations for classwork, homework, small group work, testing, and social support. Hold meetings with your advocate, yourself, and your professors to explain your situation and your needs.

Good idea, how do I do that exactly? What are these?
sg33 wrote:
* Start slow. Don't jump into a full workload. Start with just one easy class, get used to going to the campus, showing up on time, meeting people, etc.

I took one math class, and when things got tough, I told everyone I could. Got no help. Overworked myself. Now I'm too ill (long term) to ride the bus to school anymore! Had to withdraw.
sg33 wrote:
* Get help learning about the campus student life: clubs, organizations, activities, sports, etc. Get help from the disability advocacy group on campus with social integration.

From whoooooo(m)... How?
sg33 wrote:
* If the plans get messed up, don't give up. Regroup and try again.

I never give up, but I'm looking at another three (total six) months of self-rehab since nobody will acknowledge my situation.


I'm going to try over again in Seattle, WA. If anyone knows anything, please post it here. I have weak eyes.


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GoonSquad
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10 Feb 2014, 11:41 am

Well, maybe I can help a bit....

So, probably the first thing to do is get in contact with the office of academic access (or whatever they call it at your school--these are the people who help students with disabilities, every school has this, as it is required by the ADA) and get registered. These people will need to see medical records and anything else you have that will establish that you have a verifiable, bonafide disability. Once you do that, these people will help you figure out what accommodations you need/are entitled to.

In addition to the folks mentioned above, you should check to see if your school has additional support programs just for people on the spectrum. This is not required but my university has an extensive program for students with autism. However, since I don't have an official Dx, I'm not eligible for their services and I can't tell you much about them.

I don't know what sort of school you are thinking of going to, but I can tell you from personal experience that the bigger the school is, the more likely they are to have the sort of support services you need. That being the case, if you have a choice between a major state university or a community college, I'd pick the university. Of course, this is just a general rule of thumb. You should always research this kind of stuff before you register with the school. Any good admissions adviser should be able to tell you all about support services for students with disabilities.

I hope this helps a bit. If anything is unclear, or you need more specifics don't hesitate to ask. I know what it's like to try to cope with multiple disabilities while going to school. I've had to learn how to advocate for myself and locate help on my own... The good news is, the help is there. The trick is being able to sniff it out!

Good luck, and don't give up.

PS

As far as having trouble with classes goes, the school should have academic support services--specifically a writing center, math center, and free tutors for everything they teach.

It's pretty surprising that you could not find help with math. Every math class I've taken as an undergrad required the student to do one tutor session at the beginning of the term whether you needed it or not. It was a huge pain in the ass, but it did ensure that everyone knew where and how to get help.


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KWifler
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11 Feb 2014, 12:50 am

@ GoonSquad: Thanks for the informative response!
I tried out Whatcom Community College. There, they have only one person (disability counselor) who works with every disabled person in the entire school.
I was never told about any support services related to autism, and the disability counselor even changed the grading procedure to make me fail her "easy credit" class.
I scheduled several appointments with her to ask for additional help, but she suggested that I figure it out on my own.

I did go to their "math lab" where students go to get help for math, but I wasn't able to get a good tutor, and 90% of the students in my math class earned failing marks by mid term. This was a high-school level math class. The motto of the tutors was "figure it out your own way" which seemed to be the theme of the school with everyone.

I'm not yet capable of choosing where I go to college, although I've been considering getting help moving to somewhere in the Seattle area for education. I'm smart enough that I should be able to learn any subject, as long as I get the support and involvement I need.


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