When we share about our child with others, there are so many things to say and so little time to say it. As a parent, you know him better that anyone in this world. Your child spends many hours with others who are trying to help with many of his learning differences. It's important to share with the people who work with your child--your perspective. Should it be very basic or more in-depth? Well, here are a few insights that might be helpful.
1. If you have a lot to say and a limited time to do so, a fact sheet on your child provides a method to do so that keeps you on track and serving as an outline. It won't help the child if you go off on a tangent and don't communicate the essentials about the child.
2. It can be kept by the school as a lasting reminder. Think of it as a visual support.
3. Later, you can communicate to the school by saying, "in my son's fact sheet: under possible accommodations, you will find.........I'm just checking in to see if you've tried that and how it is working. Could you e-mail me back letting me know if he's responded positively to that?
4. Most educators work on a need-to-know basis. Many times a parent meets with a teacher before the school year begins and the fact sheet gives the teacher an idea what the student will be like. Once the teacher has been in school a few days or weeks, the fact sheet becomes a more important tool because of needing to know what will work in certain situations.
What should be included? Well, the is an individual choice but here is a template I've used in the past.
1. State student's name and a few general facts including any diagnosis he has been given
2. Give a list of symptoms or characteristics that are seen by this child caused by the diagnosis.
3. List strategies that are helpful in helping the child be successful in the areas that will be seen in the classroom.
4. Provide any additional information that will aid the student that didn't fall into the above categories.