I've posted here from time to time, as I have several children with SN. This post is about my 6 yo DD, who is in 1st grade and has been dx w/an anxiety disorder.
I've known for a long time that her brain was wired "differently" from her older sibs, and have watched her struggle with things that they never did: learning letters and numbers, speech (she has been receiving ST for 2 yrs. now), and now that she is school-aged, reading, writing, math, pretty much everything. :( She struggled a bit in Kindergarten, but had a wonderful teacher and made enough steady progress that she stayed at grade level, so I held off on getting her any additional interventions, not sure exactly what was going on, you know? I chalked it up to her being a bit of a slow starter.
This year has been really hard, though. She has a new teacher, who is by nature rather stern and very stingy with compliments, but more importantly, she is obviously used to dealing with either typically learning or gifted children and has nothing positive to say about my DD and her lack of progress this year, yet she keeps using the same strategies with her, and they're.just.not.working. Meanwhile, my DD has gone from a bubbly, self-confident child who LOVED school to a timid, fearful child who cries every.single.day. at home and in class because "she can't read and she hates school." :( At 6, she's being turned off learning. That's just not okay.
FWIW, she'll be moving classrooms on Monday, thanks to some long talks with the principal. I'm really hoping that her new teacher (whom some of my other kids have had before and is a very warm and supportive person) will go a long way towards repairing her fragile confidence, but the academic struggles remain a key issue.
The principal worked with DD twice in the past week, in both reading and math, and confirmed what I've now suspected: she almost certainly has a learning disability (likely dyslexia, but it could be something else, or something more.) The plan at the moment is for both her classroom teacher and I to offer her different strategies targeted specifically at her deficits, with the principal, who is also a master teacher, consulting (should note here for sake of clarity that DD attends a charter school that offers an alternative curriculum and I homeschool half of it.) But there is no plan at this time for her to be tested through the school district for an official diagnosis or to end up with an IEP. Why? Because she's technically not behind "enough" yet to qualify. And if our intervention helps her, she might not ever get far enough behind to qualify.
HOWEVER, I'm not a spec. ed teacher (although after 6 kids and various diagnoses, I am certainly an official "momologist" and can speak knowledgeably on a wide variety of issues, lol) and neither is her classroom teacher, nor the principal. None of us are certified in dealing with dyslexia or the like. And I feel that DD may require more specialized instruction than we can provide her. But unless she really "fails" in the school system, that support is apparently going to have to come from a private source. And I'm very concerned about our ability to pay for it. DH is currently unemployed, and the kids receive Medicaid. My DD Sophie, who has Down Syndrome, has an IEP and receives a number of therapies, but they are all provided either through school or through her insurance, so we have no out-of-pocket costs. And her diagnosis was made at birth, so this situation is new for me.
So, finally, my question: will insurance pay for DD to be tested for a learning disability? And if so, would it also pay for her receive services? Or is my only option going to be for her to fail "enough" to qualify for testing through the school?
Has anyone else been in this position? Advice, insights, please...