Our Specialties | Schools and Education Advocacy
Schools and Education Advocacy
Is your child struggling in school because of emotional, behavioral, or psychological health issues? If there is something going on at home- whether it is divorce or a death in the family, or other troubles- it will most likely affect your child at school. If your child is facing problems like bullying, emotional or social sensitivities, or test anxiety, these also may affect social and emotional functioning at school. Circumstances involving DCFS or foster care can cause difficulty as well. Not only do we invite parents and children seeking support and counseling for any of these situations, but we can also coordinate with school therapists, teachers, and other staff, to make sure that these difficulties are taken under consideration.
Advocacy for support in the school environment is one of the clearest examples of the dedication we have to creating a continuum of care for our clients. Because children and adolescents spend much of their time in school, it is not enough to treat them in the context of the counseling office or the home. For your child to thrive, they must be comfortable in their learning environment, especially if they are dealing with emotional, behavioral, or psychological health issues, or learning difficulties. We are more than willing to coordinate care so that your child’s academic performance will not be hindered by any learning or emotional difficulties. Two specific areas of advocacy that we specialize in are Individualized Education Plans (IEP) and Section 504 Plans.
We advocate for an Individualized Education Plan (IEP) to be put in place for students who have learning issues associated with ADHD, cognitive challenges, learning disabilities, as well as emotional and behavioral issues which may affect functioning and academic performance. An IEP is a customized program of education which offers a student the extra attention they need to help them succeed in school. We can work together with schools to help them understand the academic, social, and emotional needs of your child, in order for them to establish an effective IEP. This might include actions such as coordinating with school therapists and teachers, or attending your child’s IEP meetings to discuss their academic goals and steps needed to achieve them.
Section 504 Advocacy:
A 504 plan can be established when a student is struggling in school with medical, psychological, or behavioral difficulties. While they may not qualify for an IEP plan, they still may require accommodations and/or specialized modifications in order to help them reach their potential at school. For example, a child with an eating disorder may need specialized accommodations, such as a second set of textbooks, or scheduled nurse’s visits. A child with anxiety may require modification of assignments or schedules to ease worrying and stress. Whatever the issue your child is facing, we can work with the school staff to ensure support is in place for their needs.