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Autism and Organizing for Finals – Part Two

In my last blog I explained how my child with autism now prefers to get ready for finals. Luckily, he accepted my suggested approach to start early and spread out the work.

How does his high school organize finals?

His high school divides finals up by periods. The school works on a regular six period schedule. Last year, the finals were divided by periods one and two (finals were on that Monday), periods three and four (Tuesday), and periods five and six (Wednesday).

This year, they’ve juggled the period numbers…two and three are on Monday, four and five on Tuesday, and six and one on Wednesday.

This was all well and good until the Friday before finals!

What happened?

It’s not a huge problem, so I don’t want to over-exaggerate. I just want parents to be aware of the things that schools do, and that they don’t always do early. They often get to these things late.

Last weekend, (the first weekend in our studying program) my son began to work on his study sheets and he finished an English project.

This weekend, we had a plan in place to finalize study sheets and review work according to the finals schedule. For my son, he was scheduled to take his Math final on Monday, his English final on Tuesday, and his Biology and Spanish final on Wednesday.

Until the last Friday when I got word of a “little” adjustment in his personal schedule.

Now, again, I’d like to empathize that there’s strictly nothing wrong with what the school did, they’re trying to help. My issue is with the late timing of things…

What happened?

Well, the school knows that my son takes his tests in a testing room. This is written in my son’s IEP.

I got an email from my son’s school case worker on the Friday before finals that they had assigned rooms where he needed to go to take his finals.

And, that his Spanish final was being broken up into two halves…for his benefit.

Now, on the face of it, yes, this was a decent consideration. He does have an extended time limit in his IEP, along with the testing room requirement.

Finals only happen twice a year, and one problem I had with this is I don’t remember them doing this to him last year, breaking up his Spanish final, and (especially) doing it last minute.

I didn’t fight it, though.

Sometimes, you have to pick your battles, and I felt this wasn’t one of them.

My son had to prepare for finals anyway.

And, getting a portion of a very long (a bit too in my opinion) Spanish final done two days early isn’t a bad idea. My son didn’t fight it, either. We weaved in the appropriate Spanish studying over the weekend.

It all worked out.

We were forced to make a few adjustments, but on the whole, we were fine with it. I made sure my son got the work done and he was ready for his finals.

It’s just something to be aware of for parents.

Sometimes helpfulness comes in different forms.

And, sometimes it comes last minute.

Just be aware of it. Autism and Organizing for Finals – Part Two


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