Category Archives: Blog

Evaluation for Learning Disability

July 28,2018

Under the federal law known as the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA), public schools are required to find and evaluate the needs of children with suspected learning disabilities (LD). Parents have the legal right to request such testing. Students with LD can qualify for additional educational support or accommodations.

Simply mentioning your concerns to your child’s teacher may be insufficient to secure testing for LD. Evaluations are expensive. Providing years of services to children with disabilities is even more so. To ensure the school system tests your child, your best bet is to put your request for an evaluation in writing.

Send a letter to your child’s teacher and copy the principal and the school district’s Director of Special Education. In your letter outline your specific concerns and why you believe there may be a learning disability. Mention any developmental delays and any family history of LD. Explicitly say you’d like your child to be evaluated and that you give your permission for testing. Finally, be sure to ask if there are any official forms you need to complete to initiate the evaluation.

You may want to mail your letter by certified mail with return receipt requested. That way you have date-verified proof that you’ve asked the school to test your child. If you haven’t heard back from the school after five business days, send an email to follow up. (It is good practice to have a written record of all communications with the school regarding LD.)

Early intervention is very important for supporting students with LD, so don’t delay in requesting an evaluation. If you suspect your child has a learning disability, put your request in writing today.

 

Stock Your Library

June 25,2018

How can you encourage your children to unplug and pick up a book instead? Make sure they have easy access to them: create a home library in a convenient and visible place.

Start by collecting children’s books wherever you can find them: thrift stores, garage sales, or book stores. Choose a variety of types of books you believe will interest your children. Further build your library by asking relatives and friends to give books for holidays and birthdays.

Once you have gathered several books, place them together on a special shelf, or on a bookcase, or in a crate. Work with your children to organize the books in a way that makes sense to your family – for example, you might put picture books together and chapter books together. Be sure to make a special section just for library books so they don’t get lost.

Building your own home library signals to your children that reading is an important and worthwhile way to their spend time. If you choose books that truly interest them, they’ll also learn that reading is fun and interesting, too!

 

 

Build Background Knowledge

May 22,2018

Summer, when school is out, is a great time to help your children build additional background knowledge of the world and to improve their reading skills.

If you go on vacation to the beach, NYC, or the Grand Canyon, consider following up with age-appropriate books that help your children learn more about your destination. Or, when you hear the news about a volcano erupting in Hawaii, show your children videos of that online and follow up with a book about volcanoes.

You’ll be helping your children better understand the world around them. Plus, this will help keep their minds sharp and ready for school in the fall.