How Do I Know if My Child Needs Accommodations?

/, ADD, adhd, Aspergers, autism/How Do I Know if My Child Needs Accommodations?

Climbing WallIf your child is capable of learning and demonstrating his knowledge, but not in the same way, at the same rate or under the same conditions as his or her typical peers,* your child may be legally entitled to accommodations.  The first step is to find out if he or she has a disability usually by getting a psycho-educational evaluation (i.e., a set of standardized tests given by a psychologist who can determine if a student has learning difficulties or not).  If your son or daughter is a public grade school student, and you or the teacher believes they may be disabled, you can request an evaluation by a school psychologist at no cost to you. You may also hire a private evaluator, usually a psychologist.  Private evaluations can be very expensive and unfortunately, a high price does not always mean a high quality report.  I recommend contacting your local university’s psychological services center – they often provide relatively lower cost evaluations of better than average quality.  Both the University of Miami and Nova Southeastern University have such centers.  As part of that evaluation, the psychologist should include a set of recommended accommodations to remediate any disability.

*Students with disabilities may have difficulty, for example: knowing how to organize information meaningfully;  relating new information to previous knowledge and; remembering large quantities of information.  Thoseare all struggles which your child’s teacher can accommodate, if they are the product of a disability.