From the expert: 3 ways to communicate with your child's schoolAug 22, 2022
From our resident scholar and educational consultant Delphine Rule of Access2Education
It’s that time of year again, return to school is just around the corner. With that comes the first-day nerves, the question of who the teacher is and what friends are in the class.
Along with those first-day questions, have you considered how you will communicate with your child’s teacher? If your child has a speech delay, has a learning disability or is in the process of working with professionals to assess their learning needs, how should you communicate this?
If you have a child with learning needs, it’s so crucial that you share the information with your child’s teacher and school. By sharing this information, you are supporting your child so that the teacher and school can put systems in place for day one. Sharing information allows the teacher to better understand your child’s learning needs right from the start. This could simply be using social stories to support transitions or ensuring that the proper writing items are ready from day one.
So how do you communicate this information? Here are three ways to get you started.
If you have had an assessment done by a professional (occupational therapist, speech pathologist, psychologist, doctor etc.), share that documentation. Setting up a meeting with the school to discuss the document is the best way to begin opening up communication.
Ask for a parent-teacher meeting early
You don’t have to wait until the first report card to meet with the teacher. If you have a concern or have the information, you want to share, simply connect with the teacher and ask for a meeting in the first few weeks.
Check your school board’s Special Education Plan
All school boards have Special Education Plans on their web pages available to families. If you have a child with a learning difference, make sure you find this plan and read through it. It will help you understand what supports are available and how to access them.
No matter what support your child needs to succeed, starting with communication is essential. Leaving the teacher and the school to figure out what you already know does not support your child. Schools are here to support your child in every way they can. Creating a team between families and schools is so important.
Need help communicating information to your child’s school? Not sure where to start? As a Special Education Consultant, I work with families to support them in advocating for their children. Together we can help the school better understand your child to ensure their success. From supporting you to understanding Individual Education Plans to finding resources and much more, check out my web page, www.access2education.com or email me at [email protected].
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