The future

So as the father of a young man who is now out of high school and looking to find what his future might hold, I thought these two articles in the St. Louis Post-Dispatch (my local paper) might be worth reading. The first is entitled “Autism makes life after high school a struggle for the ‘Mayor of Parkway West’ ” by Kristen Taketa. In a way, I’m living this story.

The other one is entitled “UMSL program gives students with intellectual disabilities a college experience ” by Ashley Jost. I’ve actually took my son up to UMSL to learn a little more about the program. Unfortunately, he’s not interested. We’ll have to wait and see if that changes at some point down the road.

Sincerely-

   

Autism Librarian

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Proud dad

So today was a really great day. I went to parent-teacher conferences where I heard lots of nice things about all my kids. See, this was for my youngest one but I actually got the chance to remember all of my kids as they’ve gone to middle school. We told lot’s of stories and I heard lots of great things while the teachers and staff asked how my daughter and oldest son are.

On top of that, I got a call later in the day about my oldest son from his teacher at the Vocational Skills Program or VSP for short and again I got nothing but rave reviews about how great he’s doing.  Which only added to my pride as just the other day I also got a glowing report on my son from the program head.

So all in all it was a great day. When you look back, it’s these days you cherish most. Just like with autism, when you know one of my kids, you know one of my kids.  I should also add, all of my kids wouldn’t be where they are today if it wasn’t for some amazing teachers and school administrators. To them, I say thank you.

Sincerely-

   

Autism Librarian

 

 

Siblings

So this is a topic that until recently I must admit I haven’t dealt with much, as my son’s siblings are 14 and 11 respectively. However, my daughter the other day brought the topic up and so after that conversation, I had to admit I needed to do something.

So what I did was contact someone I know over at the group St. Louis Arc to see what was available. Unfortunately they had groups or meetups only for 6-12 year olds and adults, so I guess my job here is to see if we can start something up for teenagers.

So while in this situation I have no article, I will keep you posted as what happens next. I’m still waiting to hear back from my friend I contacted but I also offered to help start a group if need be. Stay tune.

Sincerely-

 

Autism Libarian

Special needs trusts new rule

Recently I just open up an ABLE account for my son. I had look at opening a Special Needs Trust but decided against it because of the flexibility of ABLE accounts. So I was happy to see this article entitled “Feds Clarify New Rule for Special Needs Trustsby Shaun Heasley over at Disability Scoop. To me, the more flexibility for people with special abilities, as well as their caregivers, the better.

Sincerely-

   

Autism Librarian

My sons future

Tonight I don’t really have an article but I just wanted to given an update on what I’ve been doing for my son. So last week I went to a Family Transition Support Group meeting over at St. Louis ARC and asked them about the ability of individuals to open up their own Special Needs Trust and they said she wasn’t aware of that.

Then tonight I first e-mailed my state treasurer to see what the status is regarding ABLE accounts here in Missouri and then e-mailed the Special School District here in St.Louis County to set up an appointment to talk some more about the options my son will have after he graduates this spring.

My next step is to look over the workshops for this semester and take or re-take any I feel I need too. For some strange reason when I went to that meeting last week, I felt sort of like I have a plan.

On a side note though, I recently wrote a post on the idea of building a tiny house for my son and I learned at the aforementioned meeting that Autism Speaks recently did some research on them. I printed something up the other day and I still need to read about that. There’s always something!

Sincerely-

   

Autism Librarian

Today was the day

It didn’t start out to be this kind of day but it ended up that way. I intended to start cleaning my room but the first pile of papers I had in my room to go through turned out to be mostly about my oldest son and his future.

So today was the day I started really planning out his future. I created a sort of time line of what resources I need to get in touch with. I also created a to do list for myself of what I need to do to help create his future. Finally I started making a list of questions to ask a lawyer regarding his future finances.

Right now I’m taking a break to blog a little and then call my kids to wish them good night. Then, it’s back to more research on the next step to take. Wouldn’t have it any other way.

Sincerely-

       

Autism Librarian

 

Transition Families Support Group

So tomorrow afternoon I’m going to my first Transition Families Support Group meeting with a local group called St. Louis Arc. It lasts only an hour and we’re suppose to bring our  lunch but as of now, I won’t know anyone, so we will see how that goes.

There is another meeting that night entitled LAUNCH Support Group which is for A support group for families of young adults who have the potential to live and work in the community, but face barriers to success.  I’m not sure if I belong there (yet) but we’ll see. One step at a time.

Sincerely-

   

Autism Librarian

Tonight

Tonight I sit here without an article yet, still a lot to read. I was signed up for a workshop on Special Needs Trust tonight but, decided to skip it. I’ve been to a couple already, so I think now I just need to start to put one together.

I also found the sheet I was looking for earlier on comparing ABLE accounts and Special Needs Trust. That’s what I need to read next and then just make a decision. If not, there’s another workshop on Special Needs Trusts this Thursday.

Sincerely-

   

Autism Librarian

Day trip

So today my oldest son and I took a trip to Jefferson City, Missouri for the MPACT Transition Summit. While we had a few difficulties like the directions we had were wrong and we got there late (fortunately, they were delayed in getting started, so we didn’t miss anything), I felt like my son and I got the chance to have a good conversation  both ways on what he wants to do after school and what maybe I can do to help.

While I haven’t looked at it yet, we were given a flash drive with information from all the breakout sessions they had. That’s good because they had several at each time, so it should give us some more food for thought as to his future. That said, I need to get some sleep. We were gone nearly twelve hours, so I need my rest to tackle that flash drive tomorrow.

Sincerely-

   

Autism Librarian

ABLE update for Missouri

A while back, just before we went on vacation, I e-mailed my state Senator to find out the latest on ABLE accounts in Missouri. According to his aid, it looks like they’ll be up and running in a nine-state consortium starting this fall. They also sent me a link to the Missouri Treasurers page with more information.

I guess my next step is to come up with a list of questions on my options and then talk to a financial advisor regarding what to do for my son. Among those questions will also be one about life insurance as my place of employment is allowing me to update and/or increase my current plan for now and even after retirement. So much to do.

Sincerely-

  

Autism Librarian