Learning Disability (cont.)
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What about school and learning disabilities?
Learning disabilities tend to be diagnosed when children reach school age. This is because school focuses on the very things that may be difficult for the child - reading, writing, math, listening, speaking, reasoning. Teachers and parents notice that the child is not learning as expected. The school may ask to evaluate the child to see what is causing the problem. Parents can also ask for their child to be evaluated.
With hard work and the proper help, children with learning disabilities can learn more easily and successfully. For school-aged children (including preschoolers), special education and related services are important sources of help. School staff work with the child's parents to develop an Individualized Education Program, or IEP. This document describes the child's unique needs. It also describes the special education services that will be provided to meet those needs. These services are provided at no cost to the child or family.
Supports or changes in the classroom (sometimes called accommodations) help most students with learning disabilities. Some common accommodations are listed below in "Tips for Teachers". Assistive technology can also help many students work around their learning disabilities. Assistive technology can range from "low-tech" equipment such as tape recorders to "high-tech" tools such as reading machines (which read books aloud) and voice recognition systems (which allow the student to "write" by talking to the computer).
It's important to remember that a childs learning disabilities may need help at home as well as in school. The resources listed below will help families and teachers learn more about the many ways to help children with learning disabilities.
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