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It's better to identify any problems sooner rather than later.
With cuts to the number of school psychologists, waiting lists got longer and longer. And when choices had to be made between you and a student exhibiting violent behaviour in the classroom, your suspected reading disability was seen as less urgent. After all, you were funny and kind, not violent.
B.C. Education Minister Peter Fassbender has decided that because about 10 per cent of all B.C. students were identified as having special needs last year, only 10 per cent of students in B.C. schools have special needs. But in fact, the number is a great deal higher that.
For children and youth with learning disabilities, school is complicated and back to school can be very different. Academic performance is interrupted by any number of difficulties, and for some students, expectations of social etiquette and self-sufficiency frequently create an environment ripe for true catastrophes.
Our discussion of learning disabilities is a mental health issue. I was born with severe learning disabilities. By my twenties I had tried to commit suicide more than once. What saved my life was research that taught me there was a neurological cause to my confusion: parts of my brain were underperforming
I wasn't a particularly good student when I was a kid. In grade school, I had a lot of problems with math, and to a lesser extent reading and writing. It didn't matter how much I tried, I just couldn't get it. I couldn't seem to grasp concepts that most of my friends seemed to understand easily.
While certainly not a cure, technology's ability to create differentiated learning environments and to create exciting simulations and virtual environments will go a long way in helping children with learning disabilities succeed.
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