Individualized Education Program for Learning Disorders in Children

Learning disorders do not usually disappear with age. Children with overlapping learning disorders, affecting both motor and communication skills, may need to receive a broad range of services in school or to attend a school for children with special education needs.

Children with learning disorders who also have a psychiatric condition, such as attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) or anxiety, may require additional treatment before learning difficulties can be addressed. Continued evaluation and support may be needed as your child begins college or enters the work force.

Child Study Center Specialists

Dr. Yamalis Diaz draws and colors with a patient at the Child Study Center.

Information from diagnostic tests and classroom observation conducted by experts from Hassenfeld Children’s Hospital at NYU Langone can be used to assist your child’s teachers and school officials in developing an individualized education program (IEP). The IEP is a personalized, comprehensive plan created for students who receive special education services in public schools. The IEP and all special education services are administered by school officials as directed by the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act, a federal law.

The IEP identifies your child’s unique learning challenges and details how your child’s teachers and school officials can best address these. Specifically, the IEP documents the types of services, environment, and accommodations that school officials must provide each year to ensure that a child meets the educational goals outlined in the IEP. The IEP is reviewed annually in case a child’s goals and needs change.

Our experts work with families to advocate for services recommended in an IEP. Our doctors can provide your child’s school with information from assessments and observations that may be instrumental in drafting the IEP. Our experts can also attend meetings with school officials to help you as you support your child.

If your child has ADHD or another behavioral disorder, our doctors can work with your child’s school to develop and implement a treatment plan aimed at improving your child’s ability to focus and reducing your child’s anxiety about the condition.

Some of the types of services that can help a child to meet the educational goals outlined in the IEP include speech and language therapy or occupational therapy, which helps a child to improve fine motor skills. The IEP may also include recommendations about the types of assistive devices or technologies that might help a child with a specific learning disorder, such as calculators for children with mathematics disorder or word-processing programs for children with dysgraphia. For children with ADHD, the IEP may recommend working with a coach who can teach strategies to improve organization, planning, and time management.

Our experts can offer recommendations about the type of school setting that would best accommodate your child’s learning needs. Our doctors can also refer you to external consultants who may assist you in identifying specific school placement options based on your child’s evaluation results and recommendations. Our specialists work with you to ensure that your child receives the services he or she needs in the most appropriate and supportive environment.

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