What parents wish teachers understood about their GLD child

  • http://maternallychallenged.typepad.com/maternally_challenged/2012/10/five-things-parents-of-2e-kids-want-teachers-to-know.html
  • https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/answer-sheet/wp/2016/02/07/adhd-in-kids-what-many-parents-and-teachers-dont-understand-but-need-to-know/?tid=a_inl
  • https://www.angelsense.com/blog/this-is-what-children-with-aspergers-syndrome-wish-you-knew/
  • http://dyslexia.yale.edu/WhatIWish.html
  • https://www.buzzfeed.com/carolinekee/it-is-a-disorder-not-a-decision?utm_term=.paKY8kvm7#.jy3yBKXOM
  • Parents need to be able to speak with schools/teacher about their GLD child at any age – not just primary school.  Parents don’t want to be thought of as  here comes “that helicopter parent again” because they are rightfully advocating for their child.
  • Parents don’t want to be dismissed by schools for advocating for their child
  • Students who have poor working memory and have difficulty with the art of hand writing really struggle with copying notes from the board or copying from text books.  This is because of the difficulty with fine motor skills and working memory creates difficulty in reading what was on the board, and then remembering  what was written and then having to write this on either the computer or paper. This is often why work does not get finished.
  • Students don’t like asking for provisions for exams, as it is embarrassing.  It is easier for students if schools had a system in place where students could access the provisions each time they had an exam.
  • Students do not always talk in class for talking sake or to upset a teacher – often they are asking the person beside them what they were supposed to be doing because they missed the teachers instructions.  It would be good if you could give students written instructions out due to working memory/executive function problems.
  • Students are reluctant to ask for help and often have difficulty in approaching the teacher.  It is not because they don’t care or weren’t paying attention, often because they don’t know what question to ask, are afraid the teacher is going to put them down, or they are afraid they may be asked more questions by the teacher and have to answer them.  Having to answer questions means the student is having to use their working memory and often they are not given enough time to answer the questions. This is a problem for students who have working memory/executive function issues.  Because this is a hidden disability , teachers often forget or are not aware of the issue thinking the student is being defiant.
  • Parents wish High School teachers understood that parents who have a GLD/2E students, need to have good communication with the school. Understand that parents who have a child with a disability need more contact with schools than a regular students family does and that parents are not doing this to be difficult.  Often the GLD/2E student has forgotten details, lost notes, assignments or missed instructions because of their disability, not because they were deliberately not paying attention. Schools do not see the stress/anxiety this creates at home as they do not live it.
  • Parents wish teachers would stop thinking provisions to help their child is an unfair advantage.
  • Parent’s don’t take their children for professional medical assessments without a reason. Parent don’t want to waste their time or money or put their child through a battery of assessments/tests if they don’t think there is a problem. Schools need to remember that.  Most likely a parent has approached the school prior to getting a private assessment only to be told there is nothing wrong.  Trust you gut instinct and do what you think is right.
  • Teachers need to understand that parents do know what they are talking about as it is in their child’s best interest for them to know.  Teachers could learn a thing or two from parents as they have often spoken to more medical professionals and read more books on their own child’s issues than any teacher ever would have.
  • Parents wished that when their children get to high school, teachers don’t assume the attitude of its an adult education environment they have to do it themselves.  The disability doesn’t go away when students enter High School.
  • Gifted students with learning disabilities need their strengths addressed and assistance with their learning disability, even in High School & University.
  • Wished schools understood that once students reach Year 11/Year 12 their disability doesn’t stop – they will need more help as the demands placed on them are much greater.   Some kids who are GLD/2E struggle with organisation, planning, slow working memory, auditory processing etc  all of these are part of their disability.  Rather than schools backing off with help in these later years and adopoting the attitude they need to do it for themselves, schools should be helping more.  Schools should be helping these students get organised given they often have professional medical assessments advising the students needs.   Not all kids develop at the same pace, it will take some of these GLD/2E kids a lot longer to plan/organise themselves.  Paedatricians advise it often not until they are 25 years old this can occur.  Does that mean because they are struggling you don’t help them, even when they don’t like asking for help and struggle to do so?  Parents don’t do this so why do our educators.
  • Schools should not allow students to sign any documentation, unless they understand what they are signing.  Forcing a student, who is a minor and has a known disability into signing paperwork to cover your arse just isn’t on.  You must discuss details with parents first!
  • Wished schools/teachers would really read and follow their own school and Departmental policies and not treat parents with contempt when their policies are pointed out to them and should be followed to help their child.