Q: My child recently started school and has been struggling. His teacher thinks he should be evaluated for learning problems. She is having difficulty providing the help he needs. Should I continue to send my child to our public school or do kids get better special education in private schools?
Answer about special education in private schools:
Whether your child will get “better” special education in private schools depends on how readily your public school provides special services and how good those services are.
Some public schools provide excellent remediation programs and do a great job. If your school is willing and provides the needed services, I’d say it would be worthwhile to see if they can help.
If, on the other hand, you have to battle to get services, then you probably won’t get the highly effective instruction your child needs. Services vary widely even when it comes to special education in private schools, so you have to evaluate what your child needs. Then see who will be most likely to provide the services your child needs.
Even with special education services specified in your child’s IEP, he may not get what the school says he will. For example, our child would go to the reading program and watch baseball, play games, or cut out snowflakes. Our school’s personnel just didn’t seem to get it or didn’t want to get it.
We tried being nice and they patted us on our heads and acted like we were idiots in regard to our son’s educational needs. After years of battling, our son was STILL reading on a first grade level even with their “special” services. Thus, we removed our boys from public school. I don’t regret the removal one bit because dealing with *our* public school was a nightmare.
When starting out, you might want to go with the public school for a time and see if your school turns out to be one of the good ones. If they are, it could be great!!
However, I recommend keeping a close watch on your child’s progress. YOU should monitor your child’s progress. Don’t just go by what the school says. If your child struggles, but the school says he’s doing GREAT, he may not really be progressing. It always pays to keep an independent eye on your child’s educational progress.
I think it’s important for you to know that there is no obligation to provide special education in private schools. It’s not unusual for a private school to offer no individual special instruction. They often expect the child to attain the same level of academic progress as all of the other students.
The main exception is private schools which specifically cater to children with specific learning disabilities. If you have a specialized private school nearby that serves children with learning disabilities and you can afford the tuition, it could be your best option.
You may find it beneficial to look at the Pros and Cons chart regarding educational alternatives. It’s my two cents for what it’s worth.
Best Wishes to you.. It isn’t an easy road, but if your child gets what he needs.. It is AMAZING how wonderful these special minds can be!! 😀