As parents, we can often tell that “something is different” early on, when our bright, intellectually curious child who loves learning, starts showing “uneven development,” confusing skill patterns and baffling challenges.
As professionals who work with unique learners, we know that research shows that the early identification, diagnosis and treatment of possible neurodiversity/ Learning Disorders is crucial in assuring the success of our unique learners in school, at work and in life.
Early, high quality, research-based interventions can remediate and ameliorate the challenges faced by our children, adolescents and young adults. It can also prevent the impact of those exceptionalities upon one’s mental health. It can also significantly improve one’s self concept, social life, socioeconomic status and contribute to the health and welfare of their caregivers.
For over 36 years, our staff has provided assessments, diagnoses and disability/ability documentation and recommendations for able individuals who learn differently and has helped clients and their families advocate for their needs. With the help provided them by our staff, our clients have achieved life goals requiring post-secondary education and specialized training and have become well-known thriving entrepreneurs, skilled professionals and have reached their heights of their abilities thus bettering our world.
High quality assessment, diagnosis, documentation and treatment of Learning Disorders (dyslexia, ADHD, NLD, etc.) and, often related mental health concerns have always been expensive. Unfortunately, in the past few years, as our country has been experiencing perhaps its most devastating social and economic downfalls, it has been increasingly difficult to obtain answers to the puzzling quest of unique learners, accurate and comprehensive assessments of our children’s unique learning needs, and help for those whose challenges are disabling. This, despite the fact that Federal and State Statutes, show that such challenges have a significant impact upon major life functions (such as reading, learning, working, communicating, focusing, self-care, etc.).
Why does my child need an assessment?
A professional, comprehensive, ecological assessment and diagnosis of abilities and disabilities results in accurate documentation and treatment and allows for adequate legal and educational advocacy only if provided by a professional, who has expertise, training and experience and familiarity with current research, treatment, and the needs of individuals with challenging disabilities.
By law, the documentation of disabilities and their impact upon major life functions, must be detailed and comprehensive, especially in the case of “hidden” disabilities such as developmental and acquired language, learning, cognitive and mental health disorders. In many cases, school IEP Assessments and other “brief” assessments do not suffice for necessary accommodations and treatment for post-secondary testing, college, vocational rehabilitation or for protection against discrimination in the workplace. Thus, such assessments are costly, as is often treatment and help.
The costs of poor or no assessment, documentation or treatment are life-long, and considerably higher: The number of individuals with neurodiversity, Mental Health, Language/Learning Disorders, etc. who live below the poverty level, are incarcerated and populate mental health and AODA circles continues to be frightening.
Research conducted by several renowned health-care providers shows that illiteracy (in this case, defined as reading below the 6th grade level only) results in a 25% reduction in life expectancy! It is second in its impact only to smoking .
The good news – what you should know
A high quality assessment, diagnosis & documentation of Developmental Learning Disabilities (Disorders); ADHD and other “hidden disorders”, even if not covered by your healthcare provider, qualifies as a medical deduction from your taxes, and can be covered by your own or your parents’ “flexible spending” plan.
Assessments provided by this clinic and documenting Learning/Language Disorders, ADHD and Mental Health Disorders, have been accepted by public schools, educational testing services (ACT, SAT, GRE, L-SAT, M-CAT, PRAXIS, etc.), colleges, graduate schools, employers, State and Federal agencies of Vocational Rehabilitation locally, nationally and in various countries around the world!
If a high quality assessment documents a disability, parents of a child with a disability (ages 0 – 25) are not only eligible for tax breaks for the expense of the assessment, but are also eligible for medical deductions AND A TAX CREDIT given by the Internal Revenue Service to parents of disabled children for all disability-related expenses. This may include the costs of special schooling; tutoring; Assistive Technology; further assessments and treatments recommended, etc. The credit can be obtained retroactively for 3 years prior to the diagnosis.
The US Supreme Court has ruled that parents of a child with a disability who know that their public school district does not have research-based, high quality services for their child’s disability, can enroll their child in a specialized, private, day or boarding school that offers such services, if those were recommended by a qualified professional.
In addition to possibly qualifying for and receiving financial help and professional guidance to pursue vocational, post-secondary education and training goals, there are scholarships, grants and other financial opportunities available for individuals with disabling differences. We can help you access these!