It’s a big step. And for some families, it can be a tough decision. You may worry about your child being labeled. You might also question if your child really needs to be tested.
The more answers you have, the easier it is to make an informed decision. This guide offers information and advice that can help you decide.
What Happens in an Evaluation
What’s the process like? What will your child experience? The evaluation process can vary. It depends on who’s doing it and what your child is struggling with. But even if the process is somewhat different, the testing itself is largely the same. Here’s
what to expect in a school evaluation.
The Benefits of an Evaluation
Having your child evaluated is the first step toward getting
supports and services at school. But testing doesn’t only shed light on your child’s challenges. It can give you a better understanding of your child’s strengths, too. Having both of those pieces of information can help the school—and you—find strategies that work.
When to Seek an Evaluation
It can be hard to know when to have your child evaluated. You may wonder if your child will outgrow difficulties, or if they’re serious enough for you to take action. But just being concerned may be reason enough to look into it.
Worries About Stigma and Labeling
You might wonder what an evaluation could mean for your child socially. Will your child be labeled or subjected to unfair
myths? Will other kids treat your child differently? Will your child be bullied? It’s also common to worry about what an evaluation means for your child’s future.
Considering a Private Evaluation
If you’re thinking about a
private evaluation, you may have a different set of questions or concerns. Private evaluations are done by a professional outside of school, and they can be expensive. This professional may use many of the tests a school would use. But private evaluations are often more in-depth.
Considering an ADHD Evaluation
think your child has ADHD, there’s only one way to know for sure. You’ll need to get your child properly assessed by a professional who works with kids with ADHD. For some families, this is a difficult step. There are lots of unfortunate
myths about ADHD.
Considering an Early Intervention Evaluation
Preparing for What’s Next
Before deciding for or against an evaluation, get information and feedback from other people who work directly with your child. That includes teachers, social workers, and doctors who know your child well. If your child is older, you may want to talk it through with your child before making a decision.
Here are the next steps in your evaluation journey: