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Dyslexia and public school


marylandmom April 23, 2009

Hi. My son who is age 6 and in kindergarten has just been diagnosised with dyslexia. He is in the moderate to severe range with difficulies with auditory processing, reading, math,and working memory. His IQ test puts him in the upper end of above average. After much soul searching we have decided to put him in a special school where he will recieve intensive remediation for his dyslexia. Eventually we would like to "mainstream" him back to public school. So here is my request....does anyone have a child with dyslexia that was very sucessful in the public school system.

Our elementary school was going to offer my son speech and language services 2x a week and a "pull-out" reading class using fundations 5x a week. Since none of the services were being offered 1:1 or with other children with dyslexia and the fact that the school does not even recognize the word "dyslexia" we have decided on the private school.

Please let me know!  Thank you.

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dhfl143 April 23, 2009

I have a child in the public education system. It depends on what you define as successful. She is honor roll student, but the school does not provide the interventions that she needs. We supplement outside of the school system. We chose this option because the private options here would have also required that we provide supplemental services for 1:1 tutoring. If we were going to have to pay for them anyway -- we decided to pool funds to provide more specialized services. Public schools are often not able to meet the specific needs and it has taken an enormous amount of effort to make sure accommodations are provided and course selection meets her needs. The services offered by the school often did and does not match what is/was required. (Reading comprehension services when problem is with decoding, etc...)

It sounds as if you have a good plan. If that had been on the table when we started this journey -- I would much rather pay for appropriate instruction to help my child than spend dollars for diagnosis, advocates, and attorney fees required to get minimal accommodations. Also, some grades with high stakes testing require unnecessary anxiety.



tattles April 24, 2009

Just wondering how you had you son evaluated? We are in the public schools and trying to get help for our 8 year old son who hasnt progressed in reading. Its been like pulling teeth to get things moving to get help/diagnosing.


marylandmom April 24, 2009

tattles: we were advised by several professionals and friends to have our son tested outside of the public school system. He has been tested three times. I can not stress this enough FIND THE BEST qualified person in your area to test your child. We went from a college student testing our son to an OK pychologist who did not uncover the dyslexia, only an auditory processing deficit to the best pychologist in the area. The last evaluation was worth every penny we spent! Also having an outside evaluation helps put you in control when confronting/requesting extra services for your child.


marylandmom April 24, 2009

dhfl143: your daughter is an honor roll student! That I would call a success! How does she feel about all the extra tutoring and/or therapy she needs outside of school? How old is she?


suzanvk April 24, 2009

Your child is going to do better in a Private school . He needs a lot of one on one . In public school it is very hard . My son was in Public school for 7 years , Started him in pre-k at 3 years old and he is in 5th grade now he is 12 years old . he was pulled out to go to speech/Language , OT. and reading in public but was not successful in public school .I have my son in a private school now and he is doing so much better . For info on Dyslexia visit there website . Good luck ! I hope this helps you or someone reading this .


trooper April 24, 2009

Parents have various reasons for choosing private schools over public, especially when their child requires special education services. I must commend you for ensuring that your child's processing disorder was identified, evaluated, and addressed. How did you select the private school for your child? Is it a special education setting?
Also, keep the public school on board for testing. Although you might not feel you need it now, your child has protection and services available, that you might find beneficial in the future.


dhfl143 April 24, 2009

Well, grades are a double edge sword. Grade don't always equate to proficiency -- they are subjective and can be based upon effort, homework, extra credit, lowered expectations, etc...

In addition, persons who are gifted can often perform well, utilizing various strengths to accommodate and circumvent difficulties.

Where the problem really lies is in the high stakes testing -- in which those accommodations are stripped away. When these scores are the sole criteria utilized to track students it puts them at a real disadvantage because based upon their lowest common denominator -- perhaps a decoding issue, they are remanded to inappropriate placements.



michellea April 27, 2009

Hi marylandmom,
I have a 12 year old son that was diagnosed with severe dyslexia at age 6. We kept him in the public school through grade 2 and it became clear that even with significant support and effort by the public school, he could not be successful, despite his high IQ.

He has attended a school specializing in teaching bright students with language based learning disabilities such as dyslexia and is thriving. While his reading acquisition has been slower than we had hoped, he is able to fully access the curriculum, has become an excellent self-advocate, is learning compensatory strategies and is doing better in language arts than he ever could had we kept him in public.

We intend to keep him at his current school through 8th grade and hope he will be able to transition back to a public, mainstream school for HS.

Could he have been successful in the public school? I doubt it. Even with small classes, taught by highly qualified teachers, 3 periods of language a day, reading and writing integrated throughout all subjects, he continues to struggle with reading and writing. I am afraid that the public school teachers would not have the time, resources or expertise to teach him as he needs to be taught. The peer groupings would not be appropriate. The accommodations and modifications would not be consistently implemented. He most likely would be grouped with non-readers with lower cognitive potential than his.

On the other hand, he has a friend that also has dyslexia who has been able to enjoy some success in the public school. But, this friend is not as severely dyslexic and does not have the same organizational issues that my son has.

In general, less complex kids can do ok in public schools. Sometimes it takes extra tutoring and support at home - but the advantages of staying in-district outweigh the advantages of a private school. A lot depends upon the student, school district and family.

I am thankful that my guy has had the opportunity to attend his private school. It has been life-changing for our entire family.

Best of luck to you and your son.


marylandmom April 27, 2009

Thank you all for your responses, they helped to confirm what I think a public school experience would be for my son.....a constant battle and effort to get the remediation that he needs for his dyslexia.

The private school we chose is for bright children with language based learning differences. We are lucky that we live near a large city with several private schools for children with dyslexia/learning differences. It is a great school and I know he will be very happy there, I just wish it was not 28K a year!


idel072203 April 27, 2009

your son is very lucky, being able to enrolled him in a private school for his L/D is great.. I am in the same situation with a different that I can not affort a private school. I have being fighting with my son school for the past 3 years for him to recieved the services he need for his ADP/DYSLEXIA/ADD/HEARING LOSS conditions and stilllllllll waiting.. In the mean time I just bared with him and give him as much support and love. Today I got very upset to his teachers because I do not think is fare of what they are doing to him.. He was tested on Friday for his spelling words. He got a C - today the teachers gave him the same test to improve his grade, he got an F (he already forgot the words) She convined the grades and gave him a D...I sent her a note asking her if the retaking exam was to improved his grade not to give him a worse grade.. You thinks is that correct? It is frustating the situation with public school and kids with problems.. they just don't want to deal with the problem, they just want ROBOT KIDS

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