Susan and David have a twelve-year-old son named Peter. Peter is in grade 7 and loves hockey. He plays in a league outside of school which consumes a lot of his time. Peter was also recently diagnosed with having a learning disability and ADHD. His parents, Susan and David, are concerned about his future. They see their son staying up late working on assignments. It seems like it takes Peter a long time to complete his homework. Sometimes he stays up past 10pm trying to finish an assignment or study for a test. Despite his hard work and effort, he is still barely passing his course. Susan and David noticed that this is taking a toll on their sons' confidence. They too are up late at night worrying about Peter and wondering what is going to happen in high school. With an increase in workload and new expectations they are worried that Peter might have an even harder time in high school. Susan and David are seeking solutions to help their son.
Does Peter's story sound familiar? This scenario is one of the thousands of experiences many parents and students are facing daily. With little guidance and resources, many parents are left to navigate the education system themselves while supporting a child with an exceptional need. While many schools do their best, with limited resources and continuous cuts to special education programs, it is a battle to get these students the support needed in the classroom. Resulting in students falling further and further behind. How can we change this?
Special Compass understands the various diverse needs of students in today's society. This is why our mission is "Navigating You To Success." Every student can learn and has the right to success, and an equitable, equal and barrier free access to education. We help parents and students navigate the system and give them the critical tools needed to excel in and outside the classroom.
Here are two key elements that will help Peter and his family on their new adventure:
Education: Learning Disabilities and ADHD are two separate exceptional needs, therefore it is important to understand each of these distinct conditions and how they affect Peter's academic performance. Learning Disabilities impact the way a person processes information. With a clear understanding of what Peter's specific learning challenges are, he, along with his IEP team, can implement effective strategies. ADHD impacts executive functioning skills, which is responsible for organization, problem solving and planning. With a busy hockey schedule and increased course work, it's likely Peter will have trouble organizing and creating a work plan that is effective for him.
Learning & Training: At grade 7, we want to help Peter become a strong, effective and efficient independent learner. What does this mean? When Peter has a better understanding of how he learns, he will be able to apply effective learning strategies that help him study and complete his work. This is known as "metacognition" – having an awareness of how a person thinks. Once he understands how he learns, he will be able to advocate for himself more and let those around him know what he needs. This is a critical element in Peter's journey to success.
For Susan and David's son, Peter, the story doesn't end here. This is only the beginning. With Special Compass on their side it will be a wonderful adventure. Stay tuned to learn what comes next on this journey. #NoLearningLimits