My 6 year old son has significant delays, particularly in speech/communication. We had him in a private pre-school where the teachers pointed out that he had some issues that they interpreted to be autistic. We proceeded to have him evaluated by a developmental pediatrician who had an ADOS study completed and he was deemed to be ”much too social and imaginative to be autistic but he was on the autistic spectrum relative to communication”. He also has trouble with his recall and auditory processing and is a visual learner. Since private school was not an option given that he receives a myriad of services including PT, OT, and speech, we placed him in our local elementary school for kindergarten. For the first semester, he was in a standard kindergarten class but this semester he is in a special education classroom ½ day and a standard kindergarten class for ½ day. It breaks my heart to see him struggle as he is very social and just wants to be like everyone else but recognizes he has learning disabilities. With his classmates just beginning to read, we can tell it troubles him as he asks us “what happens if I don’t learn to read?”. The school completed a IQ test which was conducted by an educational psychologist and his score was a 76. The psychologist also told us that she does not think he has a learning disability and that the slow development is a result of the low IQ. This was very upsetting as both my wife and I did well in school and of course want our son to his best. He also has a special needs sister who is profoundly disabled and we are doing all we can to provide all the support we can including a tutor on weekend for one hour as well as private speech therapist twice a week. With this said, we do not pressure our son and provide much love and support and are trying to focus/develop his strengths.
1. What are the anticipated outcomes?
2. Could the IQ score be wrong given his auditory processing issues?
Thanks in advance for your responses.
The IQ places your child in the borderline intellectual functioning range. Time will tell if it proves to be an accurate measure of his ability. If so, you can expect he will need academic supports throughout his school career. With a child so young, it makes sense to re-evaluate after two-three years. If the result is again in that range, you can be pretty sure there will not be much of a change going forward. For now, though, the focus should be on ascertaining the supports he needs and putting those in place. He could be re-tested now using a different battery, but there really isn't much point in doing so.
I had a similar issue with my daughter when the school district tested her in 1st grade. The IQ results from the district were 82. She does have ADD which the district recognized and I also did based on her behavior. I paid my own money and took her to a local private psychologist at the local children's hospital to be tested again. He did all the appropriate tests for ADD and also IQ again (I think at the time we had to wait 6 months or something like that). Her IQ was much higher based on the private evaluation than the IQ reported by the district . It is average around 101 and the psychologist believes that if I tested her again (4 years) later it should be even higher because she maturedand he can better administer the test. She was place in a regular classroom and only gets pullled out for help one hour per day. She is an above average student and is progressing. Make sure your son does not have ADD or dislexia ro something else that makes it hard to test his IQ. If you can afford or if your insurance pays, get him evaluated by a private doctor for a second opinion. School district psychologists are short on time to run the tests sometimes. Good luck.
Thanks for your encouraging response. We do plan to have him tested by a private educational psychologist as well. The school ed psych said that she did not think his delays were related to a learning disability but rather his low IQ. We are not prepared to accept this response and continue to supplement his school services with private services. My son does have auditory processing and memory recall issues which I believe also contributed to his low score.
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