CW Austin Learning Disabilities Conference
By Georgann Mire
“This child is so smart.”
“If you wait, he will probably outgrow it.”
“If she tried harder, she would be more successful in school.”
“If you help her, you are an enabler. Accommodations are a crutch.”
“If he would just sit still and listen, if she would just focus, if he would just try harder…………”
Your gut tells you these statements are wrong but what if they are right?
When a child is diagnosed with a learning disability (LD), it’s really hard to decide what you should do to help them. Options are few and confusing and usually expensive. Family and friends give you advice laced with pity, misinformation, or antidotal platitudes. You look to the educators for help only to find that really they want to help, but either their training lacks LD expertise or their resources are inadequate. Many providers fail to see the whole child.
We know from first-hand experience that finding answers is so hard. It’s hard for parents and it’s hard for teachers. That’s why the Greater Baton Rouge LD Coalition works diligently to bring free information to our community through the C W Austin LD Conference. For over 10 years, we’ve brought together professionals from our area who are resources for LD kids together to talk about solutions, strategies, therapies designed to foster academic success for the 1 in 5 people who suffer with learning disabilities.
Each LD child is unique and so are their needs. That’s why we invite lots of different kinds of helping professionals to present at this conference to provide a myriad of ideas about ways to help. Educators, mental health professionals, advocates and doctors volunteer their time and talent to reach out into our community to serve as resources in this important effort to change the world for LD kids.
Knowledge is power and as you broaden your understanding of learning disabilities, you’ll be able to make better decisions based on research and professional experience, not society’s misconceptions. School will never be easy for LD kids but it is a lot easier if the adults in their life are prepared to make good decisions.
People who come to this conference always meet professionals from the Greater Baton Rouge area who are caring resources ready to help. Almost as important are the connections they make as they meet other attendees who share their struggle. I’ve learned so much in the hallways, at lunch or in the restroom as I hear stories of others’ battle to help kids with LD.
We are proud to be a source of low cost and free professional development for educators, social workers, counselors, speech and language therapists, parents and foster parents. Providers who don’t understand can destroy the self-esteem of a kid with an LD just as those who are armed with best practice expertise can build it up.
Kids with learning disabilities will not outgrow them. It is not their fault. They are trying hard. They can’t focus without help. Accommodations are their civil right and they need your help.
Please go to the Events tab of our website www.ldhelp.org to register for this important event. Everyone is invited and everyone leaves better prepared to help kids with LD. All it takes is one new idea to make all the difference……..