Help for Kids Struggling With Reading

Lena - posted on 12/29/2014 ( 4 moms have responded )

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I have a family member who's 10 year old is struggling with reading. It is too the point that they are going to hold him back if he doesn't improve before the end of the year. He has been struggling with this for a few years now and he was also diagnosed with ADHD a couple of years ago. Just looking for any helpful information. He doesn't take any medication at this time.

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Sharon - posted on 12/29/2014

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I love when schools start saying they are going to hold a child back(sarcasm)!! I've been through this with my son who is now 15. In elementary school he was diagnosed with ADD and he qualified in school for special education services which means you will become part of an ARD committee and will go to meetings to discuss how teachers can better assist him in the classroom. My sons school had a reading specialist at his school so he would get pulled during the day for maybe 30 to 40 minutes 3 times a week to get him caught up per grade level. With a diagnosis of ADHD he should qualify for special education sevices because ADHD is considered a disability and it does effect his learning. I live in Texas, so I don't know how much rules differ among different states. Bottom line the parent ALWAYS has the final say if your gets held back. I have gone into meetings before with administration from the school and they start talking about how poorly he was doing in the classroom and he struggles to keep up. My response was, "Well you have him for 7 hours a day 5 days a week, so what are YOU doing to make sure he is being successfull in the classroom?" Once he recieving special education services they cannot hold him back without a meeting and your consent.

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Lena - posted on 12/29/2014

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Jodi thank you. I always excelled in school so when I began having children it never crossed my mind that any of my children would ever struggle. However my youngest son started struggling with reading this year also. His teacher waited until after the first 9 weeks to reach out to me and let me know that he was having trouble. At the first parent teacher conference I asked her what could be done to help my son get to where he needs to be and her reply was that there wasn't much that she could do. She had no suggestions and said that the school doesn't offer tutoring for his grade (second grade). She said that she had started filling out paperwork for him to be held back. I almost lost it. So it took it into my hands. I called the school district and spoke with the superintendent who then called the principal who then called me (all with the same day) and that very next day my son was being pulled out of class for a couple of hours a day for tutoring during the day. After the conversation with his teacher I was convinced that I could not leave his education solely in the hands of his teacher. I turned our extra room into a learning center and we do activities every day. It has amazed me how he has had a complete turn around and is pushing towards carrying an A in reading and his confidence has improved entirely.
The situation that my family members son is going through is a little different because they have been going through this for a few years now and I think he has kind of given up and has stopped trying. It is definitely having a negative impact on him.

Jodi - posted on 12/29/2014

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I find it interesting that they hold kids back in many countries. Here where I live in Australia, children are rarely held back. It is considered detrimental to their success in the long term, because it isolates them from their peer group, so not only are they not succeeding academically, but socially as well. While I see some merit in holding them back in earlier years, it should be more about their readiness for school and maturity level than because they may be academically struggling. In our schools, we cater for all students, those who struggle with their literacy AND those who are advanced or even gifted. There will always be students who struggle to read. Always. Many will leave high school still struggling. Our role in society is not to punish these children socially by holding them back, but finding their strengths and working on those so that they can function as adults in society.

Anyway, I probably went off on a tangent here. I can't really advise, because I am in a different education system where this is not considered an appropriate course of action. However, I do encourage you to keep in mind that holding a child back can impact them at a social level, which can snowball negatively on to other things, including his success in the classroom.

Lena - posted on 12/29/2014

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Thank you Sharon. I will definitely pass that along. I was asked for suggestions and being that we are close family I am trying to give as many as I can. I want her to be informed of her options for her son.

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