Up to 43.5 million Americans may have dyslexia. As a learning disorder, which is often underdiagnosed depending on resources and demographics, dyslexia can present challenges.
Children with dyslexia have an especially hard time. One of the major components of academic success is being able to read and write. Adults with dyslexia have often learned coping mechanisms. This includes the ability to advocate for themselves.
None of these things are true yet for children with dyslexia. If dyslexic children are simply shipped off to public schools with no attention to their learning disorder, it can be disastrous. Rather than being aware of their learning disorder, children may be labeled—by peers, teachers, or even themselves—as ‘stupid’ when this isn’t true.
Parents are concerned, and rightfully so. No one wants their child to struggle in school. This can happen with bullies, indifferent teachers, or comparing oneself to other classmates that seem to ‘catch on’ faster.
When weighing educational options, between public school, private school, homeschooling, or something in between, parents find themselves asking the question—can children with dyslexia thrive in public school? Keep reading more at this website.
Depending on the age of your child and the severity of their dyslexia, you may not be sure what to do. If this is the case for you, it’s important to look at your public school’s track record with learning disorders.
This can involve talking to faculty members, doing your own research online, and conversing with other parents. If learning disorders are viewed as an excuse for a child to be lazy—a harmful, archaic stereotype that hinders and demoralizes students—you know it’s not the right place for your child.
However, support for dyslexic students isn’t always clear. The staff may prioritize supporting children with learning disorders, but what does their class size look like? What about their funding?
Children without specific learning disorders can often slip through the cracks in a learning environment that is overcrowded and underfunded. Children need individual attention to thrive and grow. This is especially true for students with alternative learning styles.
It’s also important to gauge the attitude of the school. Do they encourage parent participation? Or is that viewed as helicopter parenting, something that’s just another drain on the faculty’s limited time?
Advocating for your child is one of the most important things you can do for a student with dyslexia.
Are Teachers Trained?
As dyslexia symptoms become more widely known, parents and teachers may assess a child’s behavior against a common checklist. Are they late bloomers when it comes to speaking, or do they complain of a headache when trying to read?
Do they struggle to read aloud, often missing or jumbling words, sounds, and letters? Do they struggle to memorize or spell? In some cases, dyslexia also manifests in conjunction with a speech impediment.
In public schools, dyslexia can be identified and treated. But a school is only as good as its teachers. While a good teacher will be attentive and empathetic, this doesn’t fix everything.
If appropriate funding and class sizes are small enough for individualized attention, teachers in public schools can work directly with dyslexic children. But attention doesn’t always compensate for knowledge. If a teacher doesn’t have specialized education for children with dyslexia, there are likely better options for your child.
Schools for Dyslexia
You may be limited by location, finances, transportation, and more. Making educational decisions for your child is stressful, especially when you’re trying to give them the best chance at success that is possible.
In some cases, public schools are the right option for children with dyslexia. But if the option presents itself, it is absolutely worthwhile to investigate schools for dyslexia.
These schools are built to create an individualized learning environment that best suits your child’s needs. In a traditional public school environment, assistance for students with dyslexia is often tacked on at the end.
This means they often sit through entire class periods feeling lost, while everyone else around them seems to be working busily. This isn’t the case in schools for dyslexia.
The entire curriculum is catered to their unique needs and can adapt to their learning style. These schools also prioritize small classes in addition to lots of one-on-one time. This can make a huge difference for children who feel like they have been left behind.
Social interactions are also a factor. At schools meant for children with dyslexia, everyone has a unique set of skills and talents. This is true everywhere, but at these schools, everyone is treated as such.
This can help a lot of learning-based bullying. It can also help with the demoralizing feeling your child may experience if they are ‘behind’ their peers. This is especially true if they feel like everyone else is grasping a concept that they haven’t.
It also helps with bonding time. If another student is struggling to read words aloud or has trouble with spelling, your student knows that they aren’t the only one. Instead, many people deal with dyslexia. Often, they can thrive in academic settings with the right support and coping mechanisms.
Multi-sensory learning techniques are also prioritized in schools with dyslexia. As learning disorders become more widely known, public schools are introducing other techniques. But the bread and butter of mainstream education are still word-based.
The majority of information is transmitted through reading and writing. By prioritizing kinesthetic or movement-based methods, students can thrive. It’s as simple as prioritizing a learning method that works best for them.
Educating Children with Dyslexia
Children with dyslexia often thrive in an environment that’s tailored to their needs. Depending on the student, this could mean individualized tutoring. Or, it could mean social support, kinesthetic learning methods, and so much more.
Being able to provide this kind of customized experience is why our students do so well. Parents feel understood and supported, and students do too. In many cases, this is the first time an academic environment has actually welcomed and supported them.