S.H. asks from Waxahachie, TX on March 25, 2009
Early Childhood Intervention
Hi, have any of you moms had any experience with ECI? When I took my 18 month old son for his well baby check last September, I mentioned to the pediatrician that he wasn't saying the average 8-10 words yet. So she told me to call ECI to set up an eval. They evaluated him and said he was on par or ahead of schedule on all milestones except language. They said he was about 2-3 months behind. I honestly didn't think that was too big a deal but agreed to speech therapy anyway. So now six months later after getting feedback from his daycare teachers (one of whom has been teaching this age group for 23 years), I told the ECI rep that I didn't think he needed speech therapy anymore. So since speaking with them, they are now saying his language ability is 7 months behind. His daycare teacher tells me that she didn't need speech therapy in the first place-that he's right in the middle of the class as far as language abilities. So I'm not sure what to do..I guess I'm wondering what other's experience has been with ECI?
P.S. My son is an only child and is now 24 months old.
So What Happened?™
Thank you all for your great feedback. I feel alot better with keeping him enrolled. I just didn't want to waste their time if it wasn't needed. But sounds like it would be the best idea to keep him enrolled and keep working. Thanks all.
P.H. answers from Dallas on March 26, 2009
I have had 2 situation dealings with ECI with my youngest son. First when he was an infant one of his neck muscles wasn't developing properly. They came out and did a great job working on it and everything came out fine. The second time was his speech. His pediatrician noticed a small delay and he started with ECI but since he has passed the age of 3 he still attends speech once a week through the public school district.
I have nothing but good things to say about ECI. We were comfortable with all there decisions and meetings they would have with us to determine the next step of action, progress, etc. I hope things work out for you.
E.A. answers from Dallas on March 25, 2009
Have you had his hearing tested? My son didn't say much even at 2 years old, and since he was 4 months, my gut told me he just wasn't hearing things well. My doc wanted me to call ECI too, but instead I saw a pediatric ENT and found out his hearing was not well because he had really thick fluid in his ears. We had tubes put in and he started talking in no time! It only took about 6 mo for him to catch up with his classmates.
N.I. answers from Dallas on March 26, 2009
Do you take your child to a doctor? Why? You don't just follow your gut or ask your preschool teacher if she thinks he is sick or developing normally, you take him to a doctor to evaluate him. Why? Because a doctor is a trained professional and knows what to look for. Preschool teachers are trained professionals but they are not trained to evaluate speech and language development. ECI has people who are. You child was 2-3 months behind and now he is 7 months behind. It could be in areas that are specific and your preschool teacher doesn't take data on so she wouldn't pick it up. Many problems kids have can very easily be lessened with early intervention. That is the whole reason for ECI. His peers are learning language and he isn't. You and his preschool teacher don't have the tools to measure his development. I trained in speech and hearing and I would keep my child in ECI if I were you. Speech is very different than language. Speech is making the sounds. Language is the ideas, concepts, and thoughts, can he put them in words, how long are his utterances, how complex are they, ect. The standards for boys and girls are different. I am a strong believer in following a mother's instinct but you need to have all the information at hand. I have had my own kids in speech and language therapy and boy does it pay off years later. Ask for written reports or more information before you decide. Do research on the areas of the delays that they tell you.
1 mom found this helpful
D.H. answers from Dallas on March 26, 2009
We had a great experience with ECI, but my son has Angelman Syndrome so his delays were more pronounced in all areas. If it's only speech I wouldn't be too concerned, especially if the daycare is saying he's right around with the other children. Usually the raised concern comes if your child is having delays in more than one area (speech, cognitive, motor skills, etc). But you can always check his ears and hearing too- that's a good thing to eliminate as a cause. I would go with your intuition. ECI is a wonderful help, but it is an elective program. Here's a link to their website that shows average milestones for different ages: http://www.eci-lps.org/ECI/Typical.aspx That might give you an idea of if he's on target (according to their standards).
C.C. answers from Dallas on March 26, 2009
My dd started ECI at 2 something. She had speech and a little developemental delays. And I know they weren't wrong about the speech, all of us were frusterated trying to understand her. She made very slow emprovements in the speech (she has a very short attention span). She was tested for the school program in the spring and they said she qualified (ECI stops at 3). But during the summer she started bursting with new words and sentence. She had her tonsiles removed; was sick a lot that year and didn't sleep well, which affects the brain. She likes the school program - play with someone other than little brother, learn different things, and teaches her more disipline getting her ready for big kid school. (she doesn't go to daycare) Maybe your dr can give you a second opinion.
B.C. answers from Amarillo on March 26, 2009
What does your pediatrician say about this? Do YOU have any concerns about your son's speech? You don't HAVE to have ECI involved, you have the right to refuse services.
F.H. answers from Dallas on March 26, 2009
I'm sorry you've expereinced such concern for your little boy. I can sort of relate. My son had "passed" all of his pediatrician's "screenings" until his 2 year check-up when he didn't fall into the right category of words-per-sentence for his age. I was alarmed at the speed at which she whipped out a brochure for ECI, pidgeon-holed my son, and named all sorts of disorders. Honestly, after the anger wore off that day, I blew her off and threw away the brochure. Our son is a very communicative, analytical (being a boy) and curious boy. He will talk when he's ready. He's not around kids but 3 days a week and she didn't even consider that verbally with me. I've found a different pediatrician with a much better bed-side manner!
H.G. answers from Dallas on March 26, 2009
My daughter was with ECI for 2 years and we had a great experience with them. The testing they do is based ok theory and not totally on what other kids are able to do. If you see that ECI is helping him to improve with speech then keep it up. While we had a great experience with ECI, we never had much luck in keeping a sperch person (because we didn't live in the metroplex). Follow your feeling about what to do. Also try working with your child yourself. Carry on a conversation with them. If he gives any response, keep going. Read with him and know that he will talk. Some kids don't talk at the specified time because others talk for them or their needs are met so they don't need to talk. Try whatever motivated him and use one word or two when giving it to him. I wish you all the best as you are doing a great job being a mommy to your child.
B.W. answers from Dallas on March 26, 2009
I don't know about ECI but if it is a 'for profit' org, I would be suspect to what they are saying to you, particularly if preschool teachers are telling you that his language is fine. It's good to monitor it but at 24 months, I wouldn't be overly concerned about a delay (assuming they are giving you accurate information). If at 4 or so, you are still noticing it, then I would pursue something. I'm a mom of 2 teenagers, former preschool teacher and currently teaching elementary (1st/2nd). Don't stress!
L.N. answers from Dallas on March 26, 2009
I have a good experience with ECI. I started with them when my daughter was 1 1/2 and now she is 2 1/2, she started not saying barely any words and now says many words and talks so much better. She started doing so well that I requested to get her re-evaluated by ECI and then dropped her service from 2/mo. to 1/mo. Now she is getting evaluated by the school because she will be 3 soon and then they will take over services if needed. If I were you I would ask ECI to come in and re-evaluate him and then if he is doing well, just have services 1/mo. until he is closer to 3 and then let the school evaluate him just to be on the safe side. It doesn't hurt anything to have ECI still come. And they can't tell you how far behind he is until they actually evaluate him again. Why stop something that is good for him and won't go too much longer anyways because he will be 3 soon. That is my opinion anyways, hope it helps.