I would like my child evaluated for dyslexia, specifically. How do I do that?
When choosing a private practitioner to test for dyslexia, you want to make sure he/she is qualified, informed, and most importantly, that he/she will use the word dyslexia in the report. Some do not. Always ask.
Also, if you went through your school and your child qualified for an IEP or 504, there are still many good reason to seek out private dyslexia testing. The biggest reason is that many schools will not test for dyslexia, specifically. A good, private practice practitioner will give you a detailed list full of your child’s areas of strength, areas of weakness, and a detailed plan of action. This will let you know exactly where your child struggles, be it decoding, encoding, rapid naming, etc. A good practitioner will also help you understand what all of those terms mean, and will point you in the right direction for additional help. He/she will also give you a full copy of all paperwork. You can take this to your school and offer them a copy for your child’s files.
Unfortunately, most insurance companies will not cover dyslexia testing. So, you will most likely have to pay for it out of pocket. Ask, up front, about the cost of testing. It is well worth it, but it may be something you need to save up for or ask about payment options.
Here are a list of dyslexia providers:
Should I use a private tutor? Are there programs I can do at home with my child?
There are several reasons a parent may hire a private tutor for a child with dyslexia. First, only 30% of children with dyslexia qualify for special education services via school. Of the 30% who do qualify, many will not get scientifically proven methods to help them with dyslexia. Finally, even if your school offers a proven method, your child may miss his/her favorite subject while he/she is meeting with the special education teacher. A private tutor would solve all of those issues, however you will most likely have to pay for a private tutor out of pocket. Most insurance companies do not cover this.
When looking for a tutor, you need to make sure he/she uses a scientifically proven, multi-sensory language structured strategy, such as those that are based in the principals of Orton-Gillingham or similar methods like LindamoodBell LIPS. Ask the person who evaluated your child for recommendations. There are many different Orton-Gillingham and/or multi-sensory based methods.
Barton Reading is a parent trusted at-home program you may do as well.
Quick Link for Tutors: