About

Staff:

Executive Director: Kevin Ohlandt

Copy Editor: Kevin Ohlandt

Opinion: Kevin Ohlandt

Legislative Liason: Kevin Ohlandt

Financial Analyst: Kevin Ohlandt

School Board Audio Transcriptionist: Kevin Ohlandt

Social Media Coordinator: Kevin Ohlandt

Contact Handler: Kevin Ohlandt

 

I am a father in Delaware of a special needs child with Tourette and associated co-morbidities.  I am against bad education funding, bad special education, corporate education reform, Common Core, standardized tests that shame, label and punish schools, competency-based education, bad education laws, personalized learning in an ed-tech environment, non-transparency, and any legislator, politician, person, or company that pushes the above.

Special education is the heart of this blog.  I write about local and national issues with special education, and facts about different disorders. Unfortunately, there is a great deal of discrimination against special needs children and I feel this is a very important subject as well.

If you are a special needs parent and want your story told, let me know.  If you are a special education teacher, and you have advice or want to be interviewed, let me know.  I will interview anyone who has some type of expertise in anything special needs related or important matters in Delaware education.  I do take guest posts so feel free to submit them.  But please let me know if you want your name published or if you wish to be anonymous.  If you have any questions, ideas, or concerns, feel free to email me  at kevino3670@yahoo.com.

I welcome any comments on my blog.  For first time commenters there may be a delay because Word Press likes to weed out spam, but  I do my best to get them approved as soon as possible.  Please play fair and don’t be racist, discriminatory or resort to extreme foul language. I welcome disagreement and I will tolerate a lot, but don’t let it get out of hand!

Advertisements

1 thought on “About

  1. I’ve had an extremely difficult time with the Delaware public schools. My child has Dysgraphia. Most people are unaware it exists yet everyone seems to know Dyslexia.

    A person can have Dyslexia without Dysgraphia. Yet a person with Dysgraphia has Dyslexia. My child was diagnosed with ADHD, Dysgraphia, Dyslexia and Dyscalculia. At one point it was thought the had Dyspraxia but that was ruled out.

    We’ve had an extremely difficult road & a very uphill battle. Middle school was an absolute nightmare. We found a school who accepted & embraced my child with teachers who took it upon themselves to help along the way.

    Because of those teachers my child is a straight A student who is going to into their senior year with a GPA over 4.0. Those teachers helped my child realize their potential is limitless. And they now have self confidence I never dreamed they would have.

    Dysgraphia often goes hand in hand with other disorders and if often overlookedand cannot be out grown. 4% to 20% of children have Dysgraphia and most go undiagnosed. They are told their messy handwriting is because they are lazy and/or not trying hard enough.
    https://www.additudemag.com/dysgraphia-in-adults-recognizing-symptoms-later-in-life/

    The Google definition of Dysgraphia is the inability to write coherently, as a symptom of brain disease or damage. They aren’t far off but depending on the child’s difficulty they can use text to speech or a computer/Chromebook. No matter what, it never goes away.

    In my child’s case, a Chromebook and some time and understanding worked. As a Junior in high school, many teachers praised them and wouldn’t have known if not for the 504. Thankfully, my child went to a school where all students had Chromebooks for notes and school work. This way they didn’t standout and weren’t bullied for being the only person with a Chromebook, as what happened in Middle School.

    I get frustrated because everyone knows or has heard about Dyslexia. Even Exceptional Delaware has links and speaks about Dyslexia. Yet 5% to 15% of students have Dyslexia, less than Dysgraphia.
    http://www.ldonline.org/article/10784/

    The reason is Dyslexia is the under lying root of these other diagnosis. Dysgraphia, Dyscalculia, ADD/ADHD, Dyspraxia even certain types of Autism can all have roots is Dyslexia.

    70% – 80% of students with poor reading skills have Dyslexia, that’s 1 in 5 children. I went through Delaware’s testing at school and while willing to “consider” Dyslexia, I had to pay almost $900 for a real diagnosis. This testing is something insurance doesn’t cover. My child’s main issue is Dysgraphia which covers much more than Google’s definition.

    The State requires 2 Foreign Language credit which sounds great, except what about those with Auditory Dyslexia? Thankfully, my child had fantastic teachers who understood the struggle. The State Requirements should be another rant entirely. Allowing students who grow up in a duel language home, and speak both languages flawlessly, to take said language as a Foreign Language credit is outrageous. They should have to take a language they don’t know like everyone else. I remember my school’s foreign exchange student from France had to take Spanish or Italian, a language she didn’t know.

    Schools, educators and parents need to be aware of Dyslexia and the problems caused. My child’s school wouldn’t even consider there was an issue in Elementary School. Even though it was plain to see my child could read a book and give a perfect verbal book report. Yet, my child could hardly write 2 words describing the book. I begged and was finally given an IEP but I was continually ignored when I said there was a complete disconnect between what she could verbalize and what she could write. The teachers, principals, guidance counselors and special educators ignored every sign. They also never did the IEP work, especially teachers designated to help.

    Finally,a.counselor my child was seeing for depression told me to pay for the testing. I admit, the results were devastating. Yet they gave me validation and a starting point. Her middle school continued to do little to nothing other than providing a Chromebook, which she was bullied unmercifully for having and the school continued to do nothing.

    My child went from “C’s” to straight “A’s” almost immediately. High school changed everything because my child was finally surrounded by a caring staff who went out of the way to help.

    Dysgraphia and other disorders beside Dyslexia need to be brought to light. Bringing these disorders to light could change the world and the school system as a whole. Schools should be testing students struggling with reading and writing in Elementary school. Stop pushing it off, you are causing more damage than good. Health insurance companies, especially Medicaid need to cover the full cost of educational testing.

    This testing completed early on could save our students and our crumbling educational system.

    Dyslexia Center of Utah has some information:
    https://www.dyslexiacenterofutah.org/DyslexiaDysgraphiaRelation

    https://www.webmd.com/add-adhd/childhood-adhd/dysgraphia-facts

    https://parenting.firstcry.com/articles/dysgraphia-in-children-causes-symptoms-and-treatment/?ref=SEM_GSN_Parenting_CNT_US-Dynamic-0_Article_URL&gclid=Cj0KCQjwu-HoBRD5ARIsAPIPendzWCcRZUxe9xwWpznVPFXwP31vjWc4Dh6_qotCAyhm7prQiGf104UaAnnhEALw_wcB

    One thing I will say, many websites say to have your child trace or write the alphabet repeatedly. This is pure torture for many with Dysgraphia. This is not a cure, there is no cure. There is learning to work with what you have and developing other skills such as typing. Typing saved my child though I believe early diagnosis would have saved my child from depression and self-confidence issues.

    Like

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.