Most parents think long and hard about the kind of schooling that they want for their children. We want a place that nurtures and respects them and ultimately helps them grow into confident, happy adults with full lives.
We look forward to our children developing friendships, learning to read and write and master academic learning, and enjoy sporting and cultural achievements and experiences. We look for good facilities, and play areas, interesting curricula, great teachers and a culture that aligns with our values.
Parents of children with special needs want all of that, but need help to make it happen. They come to the search often weary from years of dealing with multiple appointments and professionals, juggling family and all the demands of modern life with the additional pull and push that comes with developmental disabilities.
It has been said that to raise a child, it takes a village. This is never more true than with a child who has a developmental disability. For so many children with special needs, the services and funding they receive through school make a massive difference to their learning and development. Yet funding and staffing levels often strain to meet those needs.
This week’s podcast is with two parents – Lisa and Kate, who between them have 5 children with a variety of special needs. They are speaking with me about their experiences advocating for their children and working with schools for funding and services.
If you’re looking ahead to the transition to school, or are contemplating a change of school, their insights about what to look for and what to avoid are a valuable starting point.
For those listeners who are teachers, health professional or parents who are fortunate not to have the need of special services, it is at times a thought provoking insight into the lives of these families.