Before having a meeting, my parents wanted to make sure we knew what our rights were, and that nothing (else) would be unfair. Oftentimes on blogs, when I see parents talk about their kids struggling (often because the kids themselves haven't been around enough kids with hearing loss, so they feel "different,") I recommend AG Bell. Join, I say. Go to a convention, it will be a tremendous help for both parents and children. It's not because I'm some crazy die-hard oralist with an agenda (and really, most of the people in it aren't either!) It's because AG Bell has been such a help through all of this- both parens of people I met who have been through it before, as well as a lawyer who belongs. For almost no pay, they've helped us tremendously and given direction when we had no clue where we were going. Not to mention the conventions are tons of fun, and if you would like to see my smiling face, then come to Orlando!
From the lawyer's perspective, he told us it would be really difficult to win any sort of lawsuit based on educational need. Apparently, there was once a very big court case similar to mine, and the school district won. Plus, we don't really want to go the legal route- it's messy, expensive, and would just waste more time. Like Kim said, they had broken the law from a civil rights perspective.Not so much for the denial of CART, but for the ridiculous evaluation and the fact they provided almost none of the previous accomodations (captions, video notes) until it was months into the school year. He also said we had a right to an independent evaluation, and to request one. We planned to go into the meeting and request it.
My audiologist was also quite angry about the report, and thought it would do some good to have a hearing test to prove that I have trouble hearing in a classroom environment. I think this was some sort of newer test- not any of that HINT stuff with annoying white noise. This test had both male and female speakers (with extrememly random sentences) and the backgroumd noise was actual people speaking, as you would find in the real world (a classroom). With my concentration solely on listening (not on comprehend/understanding, or writing things down) I made somewhere around 75%. Apparently it's a pretty difficult test and most CI users score significantly lower than that, but it was still pretty telling. Most people with average hearing score 100% on the test, without having to put so much effort into it. Don't you think it would make a huge difference if you missed a fourth of everything said in the classroom? My audiologist thought so too, and wrote a letter to the evaluators that we brought to the meeting.
Wow, I'm just dragging this out aren't I? Promise, the next post will be about the actual meeting!