The early years of your child's education may have had a few road bumps, but things pretty much always worked out. Now that middle school has hit, you have discovered that things are a completely different story. Unfortunately, the combination of high stakes testing, a new environment, and teacher expectations all change your child's current educational plan.
As you set out to navigate the uncharted waters of junior high, use these tips to brush up on your advocacy skills and ensure your child gets the education that they deserve.
Start the Year Off Right
While the majority of kids benefit from a tour of their new school before the year starts, your child may need a little more preparation. For instance, students who struggle with directions may need additional tours to orientate themselves to the new environment. It is also important to have your child meet with the members of their special education team. A beginning of the year conference is the perfect time to get everyone acquainted, and this is the perfect opportunity to voice your concerns and highlight your child's strengths.
Pay Attention to Peer Interactions
In elementary school, your child's peers may have been oblivious to their special needs. Middle school brings more awareness, and children who stick out can sometimes become the target of bullying. Know the signs of bullying, and watch for them in your child. If the bullying continues, then you may find that ADHD schools provide your child with an environment where all students are respected.
Know When to Make a Change
Although traditional educational programs are required to make accommodations for children with special learning needs, they are not always the right fit for every child. This is especially true when your child has a high level of special needs. In these cases, exploring special schools such as dyscalculia schools opens up doors that you might not have considered in the past. These specialized programs are designed to offer the right types of support to help your child overcome their educational challenges. Talk to an ADHD school, dyscalculia school, or dyslexia school about their options for your child.
The middle school years are fraught with many challenges, as kids must learn how to gain more independence regarding their education. By staying involved and aware of your child's needs as they make the transition to middle school, you can be ready to advocate for their best interests.