At the end of last year, Jonathan's educational assistant, Mr. O, said that the next step in independence for Jonathan would be for us just to drop him off at the schoolyard rather than waiting around to keep an eye on him till the bell rings. We've been doing that since September and after a couple of days of complaining, Jonathan adjusted beautifully. He drops his backpack near a tree, plays "yellow-blue-red" with his little yellow ball till the bell rings, then puts away his ball and puts on his backpack, looks around for Mr. O, and then walks confidently off to his lineup.
Today we reached the yard and there was no sign of Mr. O, so I didn't leave right away as I usually do. Another EA, Donna, said she didn't know where Mr. O was and that she was the only staff on duty overseeing the yard. When the bell rang, I wondered how Jonathan would react. But he got his stuff, said "Goodbye Mom" and headed off into the courtyard area where all the grade 4-8's line up. At the risk of appearing to be a helicopter mom, I went around to the front lobby of the school just to be sure he got up the 2 sets of stairs to his classroom; sure enough, he'd made it with no problem. The principal informed me that Mr. O was sick today and they'd be reshuffling the EA staff to ensure Jonathan was looked after. I guess we'll find out at home-time how he got along! But it was good to see that he knew exactly what to do and wasn't hesitant about doing it. Jonathan has come a long way!