06 Sep Accommodations In The School Setting
Many times, a psychological or psychoeducational evaluation results in recommendations for accommodations in the school setting. Following the completion of the evaluation with Dr. Eisenberg, parents bring the report to school and request a meeting to create either a Section 504 plan or an IEP (Individualized Education Plan).
Both the 504 and IEP are ways that a school can offer additional services to students who qualify under Special Education.
The Section 504 plan would incorporate accommodations only in the classroom. The IEP would allow accommodations outside the classroom. Examples include speech therapy, tutoring, planner checks, an individual to help the child with their feelings, and pull-out classes.
Section 504s are more about accommodations that can easily be accomplished by the teacher and/or their aide. Examples include extended time for tests, noise-cancelling headphones, reduced workload, or the use of a wiggly seat.
The SATs and ACTs also require psychological evaluations to support the application for extended time. Given that the requirements by these two organizations are very detailed, Dr. Eisenberg is required to write a very extensive report documenting the youngsters history. The ACTs and SATs generally only grant accommodations to the students who can support their application by showing real struggles in the past, hopefully as far back as elementary school. A paper trail is always helpful here, including previous 504s, IEPs, or reports from teachers and tutors.
Given that Dr. Eisenberg was a college professor, one of his interests is in securing accommodations for college students. Many parents are shocked to find that colleges are much more liberal about granting accommodations than high schools. All colleges have a disability department or someone in change of processing psychological evaluations for disabilities. This same disability department also handles accommodations for students who are physically handicapped and might use wheelchairs. The college disability office will approve the psychological evaluation and its accommodations for such thing as extended time for all tests. Fifty percent additional time is the standard amount. If the child is severely reading impaired, they might get 100% extra time.
Schools vary in how amenable they are to accepting recommendations for accommodations. It is always important that the parent present themselves as very well informed and dedicated to advocating for their child. If necessary, Dr. Eisenberg is also available to attend and 504 or IEP meeting to support advocacy for the child.