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Get School Problem Help for Your Elementary School Child

Beginners Guide

Is the teacher ignoring your child’s problem?

This article will provide you with the reason why the teacher is ignoring your child’s problem and will provide you with a solution.  (If your child has a severe problem, then click here and read an article about kids with severe issues.)

You will not like the reason why the teacher is ignoring your child’s problem and you will not like the solution.  You will know what is going on and what you can do for your child after reading this article.

This article will answer how to solve the following learning problems:

Why is my child wild?          Why is my child quiet?          Why can’t my child read?

Why can’t my child learn?          Why can’t my child spell?          Why can’t my child sit still?

Why can’t my child do math?          Why is my child falling behind?          Why can’t my child make friends?

Why can’t my child do homework?          Why does my child have too much homework?

It turns out that about 1 in 10 children have problems with academics or with socializing with others.  In 1975, over 1,000,000 children were sent home by their school districts because the districts said they could not be educated.

Some of these children had severe problems that anyone could recognize and the school district sent those children home or sent those children to an institution run by the state.

Some of these children had small learning problems that became big problems when no one paid attention to them.  These children failed at school and the school district eventually kicked the children out of school.

Your child probably has a small problem at this point.  Without intervention, your child’s problem will grow and your child will be left behind academically and socially by his or her fellow students.

Both the United States Congress and the California State Legislature recognized the need to ensure that all children received an appropriate education.  The children with learning problems and social problems needed special education resources to solve learning problems.

Congress defined special education to mean that a child with a learning problem should receive special education and related services.

When most people think of special education, they think of children with severe learning disabilities such as mental retardation, not speaking, and very strange behaviors.

Most parents with a child with a learning problem do not think their child requires special education services.  Let me give you some examples of children with learning problems who qualify for special education but do not fit society’s stereotype of special education:

  1. There are children who have anxiety attacks that keep them from learning in school.  These children often have average to exceptionally high IQs.  They meltdown in class and they freeze when taking tests.  They worry about school and do not sleep well.  Because these children appear very normal and smart, parents often wait years before introducing special education resources to help them learn appropriately.
  2. There are children whose speech is hard to understand.  A few years of good speech therapy can correct this problem and allow the child to communicate effectively with others.
  3. There are children whose eyes do not track properly.  Their poor tracking vision problem keeps them from performing at grade level, yet teachers and parents often fail to make the connection between poor reading and the child’s vision.  Children with tracking problems will often lose their place, skip or transpose words, and have difficulty comprehending because of their difficulty moving their eyes accurately.  Many children are forced to use their fingers to follow the line because their eyes can’t.  There are about 10 other types of vision problems that can interfere with learning.  Special education vision services can provide vision therapy and often successfully correct problems.  If a child cannot read, then a child cannot learn.
  4. There are children who cannot sit still in their seats.  They often have a minor attention deficit disorder.  These children often describe themselves as instantly bored with something like homework or class.  These children often require special education related therapy services related to movement and concentration to overcome their problems.
  5. Auditory processing problems affect about five percent of school-age children.  These children do not process information that they hear in the same way as others because their ears and brain do not fully coordinate all the time.  These children often need to learn visually instead of auditorily or need additional teaching help where instructions are given slowly and repeatedly.  These children often seem disobedient because they cannot follow instructions.

The list of learning problems for children goes on and on.  Unless you have been trained in all aspects of the learning process and unless you know how to test your child, then it is unlikely that you will be able to identify and correct the learning problem that your child is experiencing.

The United States Congress and the California State Legislature both passed laws to help children with learning problems.  Those laws are a combination of a civil rights act and an education act.  The one that governs in California and overrides most other state law is a federal law known as the Individuals with Disabilities Education Improvement Act (IDEA) of 2004.

Most parents of children with learning problems do not think their child is eligible to receive the protections of the IDEA.  Your school district administrators will be the first to tell you that your child does not qualify for protection under the IDEA .

The IDEA  requires that the school district spend a great deal of time and money to understand what problems, big or small, your child has and then to address them appropriately with goals and related services.

If you learn nothing else from this article, then understand this: The Individuals with Disabilities Education Improvement Act (IDEA) is a civil rights and education law for children with learning disabilities.  Congress wrote the IDEA  to protect children from their school districts.

Once you understand that the school district is not your friend and that the United States Congress had to write laws to protect your child from the school district, then you begin to understand what actions you must take to ensure that your child with a learning problem receives everything that he or she needs.

Politicians run school districts.  You do not belong to the special interest groups that elect school board members.  School boards intentionally give limited budgets for special education to the school administrators.  Local school politicians override the United States Congress every day with regard to solving learning problems.

Your school district ignores your child’s learning problems for several reasons:

  1. Solving your child’s learning problems costs money.  Often it costs lots of money.
  2. The school district punishes teachers if teachers push for extra resources for children with learning problems.  If you do not believe this, just speak in private with good teachers and they will tell you that they do not speak up for good reason.
  3. Your school district wants to push your child along and get him or her through school, regardless of whether he or she learns anything.  Children with learning problems start to fall behind immediately and often are two years behind by the fourth grade.  Teachers push off children with learning problems to the next teacher for the next school year.  School districts do this again and again.
  4. Finally, many teachers cannot assess what a child’s learning problem is and how to correct for it.  Many teachers are largely incompetent to figure out what the problem is for your child.  There are lots of excellent programs and approaches for helping a child with learning problems, if, and it is a big ‘if’, someone knows what the problem really is for the child.

Most people can readily fix a problem if they really understand the problem.  For example, if you know your child has poor eyesight, then you get him or her glasses.  If your child has a toothache, then you take your child to the dentist.  But what do you do if your child is falling behind in reading and is rapidly losing self-esteem because of his or her academic failures?

Teachers often say students will outgrow the problem, whatever it is, by next year (push students along), or that the parents need to work with their children more (bad parents), or that your child is not trying (lazy student), or that your child is not smart (dumb kid).  These are all school district excuses for not addressing the problem and solving it.

It turns out that Congress thought of everything.  If you enforce it, the IDEA  provides for your child’s evaluation by experts at no expense to you in every area of suspected disability for learning problems.  Learning problems include life skill problems like tying shoes, academic problems like math and reading, and social problems like not having friends.

After experts evaluate a child and after you agree with the expert’s evaluation, then the school district is supposed to provide all the resources that are required for your child to receive a free appropriate public education.  This sounds so simple.

Most children receiving special education services receive those services in their general education classroom environment.  Therapists and special teachers provide a variety of services to your child.

Unfortunately, the Individuals with Disabilities Education Improvement Act (IDEA ) requires that parents enforce their children’s rights.  Other civil rights acts provide for federal agencies to enforce those other acts.  Only parents enforce the IDEA  rights for their children.

How do you do this for a reasonable cost?  There are several alternatives.

The Special Education Law Firm (attorney Jennifer Guze Campbell) provides parents with incomes under $80,000 per year a full year of complete special education legal support for a flat rate of approximately $2,400 (click here to review).

Danielle Alvarado is a special needs consultant (Advocate) who, for a flat rate of approximately $600, will provide three months of special education school advocacy on behalf of a special needs child to get the school district on track (click here to review).

Either of the above outfits will talk at length with you for free and give you some advice.

There are multiple other competent special education attorneys and advocates that charge by the hour to provide legal representation and advocacy services (click here to review those attorneys and advocates).

If you remember that Congress passed the IDEA  to protect children from school districts, then you will take advice and offers of help from members of the school district with a grain of salt.  Often parents spend several years attempting to advocate by themselves for their children with the school district.  Only about one in 200 parents gets an advocate or attorney to help them with the school district.  Only about one in 200 parents gets satisfactory results for their child’s learning problem from the school district.

If you are not happy with the way your child is progressing in school, then it is time to take action.  If you really want to study the issue of special education rights for free, then contact Team Advocates for Special Kids (TASK).  TASK will do an excellent job of explaining your rights to you through a series of free classes.  TASK will teach you where to enforce your rights.  State agencies fund TASK in part and TASK will not teach you how to enforce your rights (how to file a request for a Due Process Hearing and win).

It is ironic that most of TASK’s instructors hired attorneys to enforce their children’s rights at one time or another.  TASK instructors advocate constantly for their children’s rights and enforce their children’s rights.

You are entitled to lots of significant rights and remedies with regard to your child’s learning problems.  These include free school evaluations, free outside expert evaluations, free services for your child, free parent training, free accommodations, free assistive technology (iPads, software, etc.), meetings held at your convenience with school officials, parent training with classroom observations, continuous progress reports, special goals for your child so that you can monitor progress, and you are entitled get all of this every school year for your child.

The problem is who enforces your child’s rights to receive all this great stuff.  It is you, the parent.  No one from any government agency is going to come and help you.

If you do a cost-benefit analysis of what you must privately fund for your child’s needs for many years, then you may determine that it is very cost-effective to have a legal professional cost-effectively enforce your child’s rights for you.

If you do not believe this, then just ask your school officials to help you fix your child’s learning problem and see if the school district really fixes your child’s problem.

If you hear the phrase, “we are with the school district and we all want what is best for your child,” just ask for everything you want and then see what you really get.

Generally, the school district personnel will tell you that you do not understand your child (the child you live with and see every day) and that the school “experts” (“experts” who spent a couple hours with your child) really know what is “best” for your child.  “Best” for your child usually means few or no resources for your child.  “Best” usually means your child’s learning problem is not solved by the school district.A.D.A.M.

Now that you know what you are up against, you can make better decisions about how to help your child.

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