Many parents are hesitant to have their children undergo an assessment because of the stigma associated with labels. People worry about being judged themselves, or they worry that their child will be put into a “box” or categorized negatively. Believe me, I have been there. But what can a label really do for our children? How can it be beneficial?
Four reasons to have your child assessed:
- Assessments allow your child access to the individualized accommodations, modifications, or attention they need that is denied them without documentation indicating that they are in need.
- Assessments not only identify challenges the student faces, but also the abilities they have. This guides parents and educators to recognize and focus on strengths to build up the weaker areas.
- Assessments are also a baseline to work from so progress can be more easily and readily observed. Often we do not see the improvements because we may not recall precisely how much difficulty the child was having previously. Also, we may not observe it because we are with them every day. Progress is hard to measure when we are with the person on a daily basis.
- Identifying specific challenges allows us the opportunity to learn more about what our child is struggling with. It also helps us better understand our child, and it helps the child understand and accept themselves – a huge obstacle for many of our children with learning differences!
As an Educational Therapist, I value an assessment; it is essential to my therapy. I use the assessment to design a program specifically suited to meet the needs of that individual. I am able to understand not only their particular weaknesses, but also their strengths. If I know what we need to focus on, I can use their strengths to work with their weaknesses.
It may be our pride that dissuades us from having our child assessed. We may need to ask ourselves some tough questions like, what is most important in helping my child feel valued and able to succeed.
Having an assessment and then being given a diagnosis or a label can be the beginning of unlocking your child’s potential!
To get your child assessed, contact an NILD Educational Therapist in your area. They can give you a referral for someone in your area that provides assessments.