Thursday, November 4, 2010

Evaluation for learning disabilities

Last Thursday I submitted a formal letter to our local public school, requesting an evaluation for learning disabilities. I was told (when I called the school district, to ask about the process), that they cannot test for specific learning disabilities (like dyslexia), so I had to state what my concerns where in the letter. I don't know if all states have the same rules as California, but I'm not sure how I feel about that. On one hand, if he doesn't have dyslexia (or if there are other disabilities), I'll finally know. On the other hand, it leaves me wondering how "spot on" this test will be, since it's not specific.I plan on blogging about our journey through this process, and hopefully someone will find this information useful.

I got the call today (from the school psychologist), that our SST (student success team) appointment is scheduled for next Tuesday. In California, the school district has 15 days upon receipt of a request for evaluation to schedule the initial SST meeting. If anyone wants, I can share the letter that I turned in requesting our evaluation. I was told that since I am homeschooling, I need to bring with me:

All of the curriculum my son is using
Samples of his work
My grading system
Any other methods that we have tried

That list leaves me a bit nervous, since I have no real grading system (except a pass/no pass), I teach green (we don't always do work on paper), and I use a lot of different internet resources. So, what's a concerned parent to do? I've decided I'm going to bring in every last book my son has used/is using/supplements from, bring in the science journal I've been making using all of his observation pages (they include writing and drawing), I will type out my pass/no pass grading system, type out a list of the different websites I pull resources from, and I'm bringing in our file folder games.

I'm hoping that they will view all of the above, as the different methods I have tried to help my son succeed. I am also making a chart, listing my concerns and how they impact him in different educational areas. My goal is to provide the school with a copy of my chart, and to remind myself of things I want to address. I can post the blank chart here also, for anyone interested. The psychologist informed me that, at this meeting the SST members will determine whether or not to proceed with evaluation, based on the information I provide. Maybe I'm being a bit excessive, but you can't take chances when it comes to your child's success :)

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