Sunday, January 2, 2011

Favorite comments of '10: gasstationwithoutpumps and FedUpMom on extra time and labeling

(The Lake Wobegon effect, with a twist: where no child is neurotypical)


I had noticed the tendency at a private school my son had gone to offer almost all kids "extra time" on tests. They even provided a "diagnosis" for my kid (by someone who had never even met him) to give him extra time, though he was always the first one done on tests and usually needed to have a book with him to keep from getting bored on test days. This bogus definition of learning disability resulted in over a third of the students at the school being "diagnosed". Probably only about 1-5% had LDs, as elsewhere.

I haven't seen the problem much at the university, though---only about 4% of students there register with the disabilities resource center.


"Executive dysfunction", don't get me started. My older dd got a "strike" against her in math class because she forgot to get my signature on her quiz. She did all her homework and had an A on the quiz, but now she feels discouraged because she forgot one stupid piece of paperwork? How does that make sense?

I had a conversation with the math teacher and he doesn't require my signature anymore. 

We are getting to the point where the requirements schools place on kids are wildly inappropriate for most kids. It's time to change the requirements. Inventing new labels doesn't help.

I don't even get the IEP business. When older dd was in public school, she had an IEP, because of her "gifted" label (and that's another discussion.) I'm not at all sure that any of her teachers actually read this document, and I don't see how it influenced anything they did. Public school is all about marching kids through the day lockstep. What difference does an IEP make?

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