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I am the mother of a child who has learning disabilities. He is now a freshman in high school and still reads at a first-grade level. His writing skills are also compromised.

Are there any tips you can give me to help my son? I am very upset with the school system in my town and don’t know how to approach them calmly to make them understand that he is facing adulthood and needs to be able to get a job, drive a car, etc. What can I do?

I am very upset to learn that your son has gone through at least 12 years of public school and is still reading at the first-grade level. How did this happen? Was he not tested over the years? Did he have an IEP?

If the school system has never been concerned and if your son has never had an IEP, I would find an attorney who knows about education law and discuss what your options are. If he has had an IEP, you need to know that the school system must continue to work with him until the end of his 21st year. During this time he could receive further help with his learning disabilities and he could receive vocational training. If you do not know about this part of IDEA, ask the principal about it.

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