Imagine for a moment that you are a parent here in Santa Cruz who has a child who has just started kindergarten. After a few weeks, your child's teacher pulls you in for a meeting and expresses concerns about your child's behaviors in class. They seem impulsive when it comes to making decisions which tends to disrupt classroom activities. Your child also demonstrates aggressive behaviors and tends to lash out at people, particularly when they become frustrated.
Based on the teacher's professional opinion, your child has an emotional behavior disorder. But if you're like a lot of new parents across California, or even the nation for that matter, this may be your first experience with this terminology. You may be immediately struck with a number of questions and have concerns about how this condition will affect your child's education. If you do, you're not alone.
Though this may be your first experience with EBD, it's actually classified as the fourth largest category under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act, according to school-pschology.org. Children who fall within this category may have difficulty learning in a regular classroom setting because of their emotional and behavioral responses to certain situations.
It's because of this that the IDEA promises that services will be provided to children who have this disability so that they may receive the same chance at a proper education that other students have.
As school-psychology.org points out, it is important for parents and schools to take action to help an EBD student as soon as possible. This could mean placing the child in a special education setting or looking to outside professional sources for added assistance.
Whatever parents decide to do regarding their child's needs in the classroom, it's important for them to remember that public schools as well as private schools are required to accommodate students with special needs. In some cases, it can be a challenge at times to get this point across to school administrators though, which is where legal representation may be necessary.