Not what I wanted to hear

Written by Tina Myrteza

May 7, 2022

It’s Term 2 of the school year and you receive that dreaded email from your child’s teacher requesting a meeting with you and the Learning Support Team.  A million unwanted thoughts enter your mind wondering if there is a real problem that you will have to address.  You attend the meeting somewhat defensive and wary as your child’s teacher proceeds to describe their concerns and together the team suggests further assessment from an external provider.

You’ve heard these concerns before but facing them has been a path you haven’t wanted to go down.  You’ve told yourself, ‘It’s a phase’ and ‘All will be fine with time’.  Perhaps your partner is equally as reluctant to accept that there may be something that needs further exploration?  You also don’t want your child to think that there’s anything wrong with him/her!

So where to from here? Firstly, try to reframe your thoughts to, ‘I’m not exploring assessment to ‘label’ my child, instead and I am seeing where they may need further support to thrive at school and into the future’.  Ask to see the data that has been collected by the school so that you get a clear perspective of what they are seeing.  Focus on your child’s many strengths.  All effective interventions start from a strengths-based approach.

Remember, keep an open mind to the messages you are hearing and know that the fact the school has brought this up with you means they have your child’s best interests at heart.  It may not be what you wanted to hear, but perhaps it’s what you needed to hear.

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