A child with learning disabilities, ADD or ADHD, or social-developmental issues, faces many frustrating challenges and pressures. The resulting feelings of isolation and despair may keep a child from reaching his or her full potential. Finding a college or school that provides the best set of tools that meet your student’s individual needs can lead to increased self-confidence and a positive attitude toward the future.
The Individuals with Disabilities Education Act “IDEA” provides for levelling the playing field for students with physical and learning disabilities. Parents of students who are not making progress in their public K-12 school can request a psycho-educational evaluation, at the district’s expense. This may lead to your school district to voluntarily agree to examine your child’s eligibility for accommodation under Section 504 of IDEA. If your child is eligible for “IEP” or “Individualized Educational Plan”, the teachers, guidance counselor, parents and student will meet regularly, to discuss accommodations specific to your child’s learning needs. Note that IEPs stop once students graduate high school. In college, no longer will parents be able to advocate for their child, which is why students need to attend their own IEP meetings, hear what is being said about them, and take responsibility for their learning progress. In college, any accommodation is rendered under Section 504 plans.
While all public colleges must offer some level of learning support for students with learning disabilities, some colleges like Lynn University in FL or Curry College in MA offer a complete learning support program. You’ll be able to discern if the college culture is pro-students with learning disabilities if they offer a complete program. A “complete” program will have a learning specialist who arranges for individualized support services. For more information, please see Claire’s blog article: The Three Levels of Learning Services in College.
As educational consultants, we get to know you and your child. The assessment process entails more than just the gathering of test scores. We spend many hours meeting with both the student and the family in order to gain a better understanding of the student’s background, learning issues and general interests. We combine our knowledge, gained through personal interviews with information from school transcripts, teacher comments and prior testing, to form a complete picture of your child. This individualized approach is crucial to finding the most suitable educational setting where your child can grow and thrive.
We may recommend specialized testing, such as psycho-educational testing, in order to accurately identify your child’s individual needs. We work with other counseling professionals to understand your child’s individual learning style so that we may formulate a customized educational plan.
By using one on one coaching we encourage your child’s independence. Our goal is for each student to achieve successful independence so that they can rely on their newly acquired tools to identify a specific challenge, develop appropriate compensation strategies, and advocate for him or herself. We provide the student with guidance for decision making so that they know when to collaborate with a friend or parent, consult with a mentor, or follow through independently. We support our students as they seek a variety of opportunities to pursue their interests.