What should I do if I suspect my child has a disability?
What you should do if you suspect your child has a disability depends on your child’s age. However, at any age, it is recommended that you first speak to your child’s pediatrician to rule out possible physical concerns such as hearing and vision issues.
If your child is under the age of three, contact Early Steps at www.laeikids.com. Your child may qualify for early intervention supports.
If your child is older than age three, but not yet in school, contact your parish Pupil Appraisal office. When you call, ask for the Child Find representative. Discuss your concerns with this person and set up a time for your child to be evaluated.
If your child is enrolled in school, call your principal or guidance counsellor. Ask for a meeting to discuss your child’s situation. Ask that the classroom teacher be present.
Voice your concerns and be prepared to participate in creating a plan of action for your child. The school may agree or disagree with your concerns. The school may offer additional assistance such as tutoring or remedial coursework. In cases where a disability is suspected, your child may be referred to the RTI team. Before a special education evaluation can be completed, children must go through the RTI process. For more information about RTI, see my next blog post.