When your child is diagnosed with a learning disability in elementary, middle or high school, parents rely on the guidance of teachers and special educators for advice, support and implementation of services. At the college level, the issues surrounding academic support and accommodations can get complicated, often causing stress for students and families.
MY ADVICE FOR PARENTS:
Understand the different levels of support offered at each college that your son or daughter has on their list.
While you visit each campus for a tour, make an appointment with the Disability Coordinator and have a list of questions ready.
Take note of where the Disability Office is located. Is it centrally located and easily accessible?
Make sure that you have all "up to date" documentation needed to obtain the appropriate academic accommodations. Documentation should be no more than three years old and the documentation needs to be the adult versions of IQ and performance testing.
Understand FERPA (Family Education Rights Privacy Act) and how it affects the flow of information between you, your student and the college.
Understand and keep in mind, that MOST colleges don't want to deal with parents, but want the student to advocate for themselves, which can be unfamiliar territory for the student.
Make it a point to submit documentation over the summer (before classes begin). There are many steps in obtaining accommodations, such as filing out paper work and participating an "intake session" with support staff. There can be additional meetings after those steps have been completed. BE AWARE of the multiple procedures involved!