My son will be 12 in February and it doesn't seem like he has learned much over the years. He is in fourth grade and was retained in Kindergarten. The school will not hold him back any more even though he failed the required test to proceed. So ready or not, it seems he is being pushed through school and falling further behind every year. Things have to be explained to him slowly and in a way he can understand, which usually differs from normal instruction. He does not like to use his brain at all, but I was told that was normal. His behavior is excellent though. He's in special education class, but I'm under the impression that they just tell him how to do things rather than teach him. I've always suspected the many febrile seizures that he had between the ages of 1 and 6 could play a role in his delay. His seizures were quite severe in my opinion, even though they didn't last long. They'd completely wear him out and so he would always sleep after wards. He often had these seizures when ever his temperature exceeded 101. The DR's don't really seem to care, nor do the teachers. I've actually noticed that some of the special education teachers greatly overestimate how well he is really doing. No joke ~ the ER DR actually laughed when he was rushed to the hospital by ambulance from preschool. He called it "shake and bake" ha ha real funny. Anyway, do you suppose the febrile seizures could be to blame? He's outgrown the seizures now, but I'm not sure what type of DR would be best for him.
It is not likely that the seizures are associated with his learning problems. It's clear that he has learning disabilities, assuming that his overall IQ is intact. What is his Full Scale IQ? You can find it in the testing that was done to qualify him for special education services.
He has came a long way since that age, but he certainly has a long way to go. You don't think the seizures would have played a role? He was born full term at 8.5 pounds, no complications. I sure didn't do drugs or even smoke cigarettes. I wasn't old age. So I don't know why else he would be so delayed. Any feedback of possibilities or specialist would be highly appreciated. Thanks!!
It would be useful to obtain a more current measure of his IQ. Low IQ and learning disability would result in his struggles. Testing is the only way to pin these down. However, given that he is in special education classes, there must have been a more recent evaluation than the one you mentioned was conducted when he was four.
He has had a few test here and there over the years, all of them indicating that he is below average in all areas. However, he has not had another full scale IQ. He was required to pass the I Read assessment in third grade in order to advance to the next level. And even though he didn't pass, they decided to move him on anyways since he was retained once already. His behavior is excellent, he seems to gets along great with others, he makes good eye contact and can carry on a decent conversation even though his speech isn't the best. It's just when it comes to learning and retaining important basic knowledge. He's just not interested and don't seem to care to try to learn anything that takes some thought. Teachers tell me that things often need to be repeated and reworded and I've noticed this also. He kinda spaces out in intellectual conversation sometimes. He will be making eye contact, but it's more of a blank stare if he is fed more information than he can handle. I just don't know if it is actually psychiatric or neurological.
His obstacles are neurological in the sense that the problems are likely a result of relatively low intelligence accompanied by learning disabilities. These are enduring conditions and require ongoing intensive special education supports.
Thanks so much for your guidance! Just one last question: so what sort of treatment do you suppose would be beneficial? Do you think medication may help, or is there some sort of therapy? Intellectually working with him doesn't seem to get him very far as he forgets most of what he learns.
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