If you suspect your child has a learning problem, it’s important to get it checked right away. It’s normal, however, to have some fears. Here are some things many parents worry about:
• Will my child be labeled retarded? Having a learning disability does not make a child mentally retarded. Most children who have learning disabilities are quite intelligent.
• Is it my fault? Besides avoiding problems during pregnancy and birth, parents can’t prevent learning disabilities. These disorders have to do with brain chemistry, not upbringing.
• Should I wait until my child or his school mentions a problem? No. Your child may not know how to ask for help. And the school will appreciate your concern.
• Will getting help cost a lot? The government says all children must get “free” and “appropriate” education. If your child has a learning disability, he will get free services.
• Will my child be upset? He might be. But he probably already knows that something is wrong, and he’ll be relieved to get help.
If you think your child might have a learning problem, talk with his teacher. She can help you evaluate the situation.
The sooner you can diagnose a learning problem, the sooner your child will be on the road to academic success.
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