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Could your child's pediatrician help him or her in school?

A child with learning disabilities or special needs benefits greatly from added services and assistance in the classroom. And when these resources are tailored to a child's needs as closely as possible, there can be a greater opportunity for academic success.

As such, it is crucial to collaborate with the people who may be best suited to help a child and school work together when it comes to developing an Individualized Education Program or a 504 plan. Typically, this includes counselors, teachers, parents and school administrators. However, you might also consider asking your child's pediatrician to weigh in.

How might a pediatrician help?

As this report notes, a pediatrician can help school officials better understand a child's condition and needs from the medical perspective. Pediatricians have unique insight into the biological, physical and emotional challenges a child may be experiencing. And if a pediatrician has been seeing a child for several years, he or she will also know things about his or her development and history that could prove to be helpful in a classroom setting.

As a child grows and matures, a pediatrician can also serve as a guide to what teachers and others might expect with regard to a child's changing needs. 

Building a solid team

Children with special needs need support, and having this support from all directions can be critical in helping a child succeed in school. As such, when it comes to building your team, you will want to consider including multiple specialists with different perspectives.

This includes you, as a specialist on your child, and may also include someone who understands the various education programs available, someone familiar with the classroom environment and someone who understands your child's condition and needs. With these parties participating in your child's education plan, you can feel more confident that he or she will have the necessary support in the year ahead.

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