Mom opens home-school for special needs children

I am a single mom of two boys.

My oldest, Tao (7), was diagnosed two years ago with Asperger’s Syndrome and ADHD. It is classified as high functioning Autism. It’s a sensory integration disorder, so all of his senses are affected and will not develop as a normal child.

He battles to process sounds, feelings, emotions and more. His way of expressing these feelings is in outbursts of anger, frustration and aggression, often hurting, breaking or tearing apart anything that’s in his way, even if it’s other children.

This is always, erroneously, interpreted as naughtiness. Herein lies his biggest problem, being around other children.  He cannot handle them being in his space and the many sounds, noises and activities. These are called episodes.

He has been kicked out of six nursery schools, one of which was a special needs nursery school, because they couldn’t handle his ‘episodes’. I have taken him to therapy, specialists and doctors. You name it and I’ve tried it. He is on medication for his moods as he suffers from depression. As a single mother with another child, who doesn’t have any of these issues, it’s been the most difficult thing I’ve ever faced and it’s even more difficult when I’ve had no support.

Every person is different, and my son is unique, highly intelligent and possesses special issues that no one seems to understand.

My son was supposed to start Grade 1 this year. For the last two years, I have been searching for schools for him. I have tried everywhere, but he has been declined from every one of them. My special needs child is being denied his well-deserved right to an education because no schools are equipped to teach and handle children with his disorder.  Even the “special needs” schools have turned him down.

The self-paced home-schooling seems to be the only solution.  I have taken a huge leap and had to resign from my day job to school my child. As a single parent this is a massive decision and I will have to work really hard to make ends meet.

I am starting a support system for other parents in the Alberton area. As I know the huge financial implications with a special needs child, I am aware most of these parents have to work, so I have a pace-based home-schooling tutorial service.  I am working closely with an occupational and play therapist and I have a behavioural therapist on-site. I also have a marriage counsellor on-hand who will council the parents, as, from experience, these difficult, adorable children can cause strain on marriages.

I am a qualified dance and music teacher and will offer these extra mural activities, as well as swimming lessons with the swim school we have on-site.

Please feel free to contact me should you be interested in joining our support group or to find out more about the home-school tutoring I offer to ADHD and Aspergers Grade 1 and 2 children.

Contact Amy on 074 492 8688, email info@littleprincetutor.co.za or visit the website www.littleprincetutor.co.za.

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