Learning and Intellectual Disabilities are challenging in today’s fast-paced school environment where children who fall behind are left behind. These kids often look unmotivated and off-task, they are more likely to distract their peers and get written up; or the opposite— they sit quietly because they don’t even believe that their teacher would help them. These kids are often wanting to learn and have low self-esteem because they haven’t been set up to succeed.

Learning and Intellectual disabilities affect your child’s cognition or higher level thought process. A learning disability falls into one of the following three categories: reading (dyslexia), writing (dysgraphia), or math (dyscalculia). Having a disability in one of these areas is detrimental because these subjects all build on the basics as your child ages. 

For example, in reading we learn the alphabet, then phonics and sight words, then reading sentences, learning larger words, pronouns, adjectives, and verbs, etc. Your child moves from picture books, to chapter books, to novels, and beyond. If your child has a reading disability, then they are usually stuck in a lower level understanding. 

Their learning disability can affect other subjects as well. For example, they can’t read their history textbook, they can’t read word problems for math, and they have difficulty with equations in science.

An assessment of this type relies heavily on cognitive and academic ability scores. Your child will be given an intelligence test, a general academic ability test, and several specific tests on the area of the potential learning disability. A learning disability is often lifelong and can affect future employment and collegiate opportunities.

A child with an intellectual disability will receive low scores on intellectual and adaptive skills or life skills. Intellectual disability is a lifelong condition. A child with this diagnosis will have difficult learning most things and will learn slowly. It is important to know that there may be a cap to how much they can learn and it will require patience and more effort to help them to learn.

Early assessment is crucial to helping your child move at their pace and get additional support at school so that a limitation in one academic area does not affect other academic areas.

Public schools who have a school psychologist on staff can conduct a psychoeducational evaluation to determine if your child is having difficulty in the areas of math, reading, writing, or general intellectual functioning. School districts have their own criteria for what constitutes a disability and therefore requires additional support services.

If your child is doing poorly in school and you’re concerned about their learning ability you can request in writing that the school assess them. CDK has a request template that you can fill out and send to the school.

Private or charter schools may finance an assessment with a psychologist to determine if your child meets criteria for a learning or intellectual disability, but often the cost is out-of-pocket for parents.

Treatment will depend upon severity of the disorder but could include an Individualized Education Plan (IEP), special education, tutoring, behavioral therapy, and one-on-one support.

To have your child assessed at Calm Down Kids contact us today.


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