All children need a certain level of support at school, but some of them may require more support than others. They might need extra support due to medical issues, learning differences, social difficulties, or other issues that make school more difficult for them. It’s important to make sure that if your child requires extra help and support, they receive the adjustments that they need. As their parent or carer, it’s up to you to make sure they’re getting the support that they need at school and at home. Here are some of the things that you should be doing.
Learn About Learning Differences and Additional Needs
If your child has just received a diagnosis or is undergoing assessment, it’s essential to educate yourself about what your child is dealing with. You should be given information by the professionals who are helping you, but it’s also a good idea to do your own research. You can read dyslexia books that teach you all about the disorder, what it means for your child, and what you can do to help them. You can also seek out support groups and other parents who have children with the same challenges as your child.
Communicate with Your Child’s School
Good communication with your child’s school is essential if you want to make sure they get the right support. Some children might be assessed for certain issues through their school, which can help to create a clear pathway for support. However, you may often need to inform the school of any challenges or problems that your child has so that the right support can be provided. This can include creating an IEP (Individual Education Plan) or a 504 Plan, which defines the adjustments and support that your child is entitled to. These can be vital documents that legally guarantee the best support for your child.
Look for Useful Tools and Resources
It’s always useful to have a range of tools and resources to help your child both at school and at home. There might be specific tools that help your child to get their work done, whether it’s having the right pencil to write with, wearing noise-canceling headphones, or being allowed to use a computer to do their work. Try doing some research to explore what options exist. Work with your child to try out some different tools, resources, and techniques that help them to learn in a way that works for them.
Teach Your Child to Self-Advocate
It’s your job as a parent to stand up for your child, but you can’t be there for them all the time. When your child is at school, you can’t be there to advocate for them right away. That’s why it’s important to teach your child some self-advocacy skills that they can use when you’re not around. They should be able to speak up for what they need in the classroom and be resilient when at school.
Be your child’s greatest support by ensuring they get the adjustments that they need at school and supporting them at home too.