With the school season already upon us, parents everywhere feel that mixture of relief and stress as their children return to school. But parents of children with speech challenges feel a particular stress. Stress that their child will be teased, ignored, or have a bad experience at school. As a parent, you can’t fix all of the problems that school presents to your child, but you can definitely help them.
Speaking with their Teacher
Teaching children should always be a team effort between parents and teachers. To help make sure your child gets the most out of their education, you need to be in touch with the teacher. Within those first few weeks of school, you should have a face to face meeting to discuss the needs of your child and how the teacher can help.
Create a solid relationship with the teacher so you both feel comfortable having an open dialogue about your child.
Creating a Plan
For children with unique needs, schools create what is called an Individualized Education Plan (IEP). If you child doesn’t already have one, meet with the school to create one. As the parent, and the one who knows your child best, you need to be part of creating the plan. It’s an important document that lays out the needs of your child and what aid the school will provide and what adjustments they will make in your child’s curriculum.
Providing the Tools to Succeed
“Tools” is a very broad word for anything your child needs. Whether it’s a communication device, one on one help, or a speech therapist, schools should help you with your child’s needs. But don’t rely strictly on the school to provide the solutions. Just like meeting with the teacher, getting your child the right tools should be a team effort.
Discuss with both the teacher and the school’s administrator about what tools your child will need as part of the IEP. Discuss what speech tools have been working at home and how to best incorporate them into the classroom. This will help set up your child to succeed and be familiar with their tools so they can focus on their education.
School Should Be Fun!
Along with learning, your child should also enjoy going to school. Having a welcoming and friendly environment is essential in schools, and your child should be a part of it. Don’t allow their speech needs to prevent them from participating in school activities and having fun. Encourage them to do their best in everything they do to help boost their self-confidence. This, in turn, will help them succeed in their school experience.
If you would like to learn more about advocating for your child in school, feel free to reach out to us through our contact us page. We are more than happy to answer any questions you may have.