Life Long Accommodations? I’m Not Buying It!

My mom is always on the lookout for articles from my hometown newspaper that she thinks I’ll be interested in.  A few weeks ago, she cut out an article for me about Bonnie Landau, an Ojai mom who wrote a book for parents of special needs kids – Special Ed Mom Survival Guide:  How to Prevail in the Special Education Process While Discovering Life-Long Strategies for Both You and Your Child.

Bonnie tells the story of her young son being misdiagnosed and she and her husband being told to start saving because her son would need to live in a group home facility as an adult.  But she didn’t buy it!

With great persistence with her school district, doctors and specialists, she came to the conclusion that her son had an Auditory Processing Disorder, a conclusion that started them on the road to getting the right kind of help and has resulted in her son now being an honors student as a freshman in high school.

Bonnie says, in the Ventura Star article, “He has overcome all those cognitive delays and developmental issues but it was because of looking for the root cause. … This is the key of what I am trying to teach parents.  You can’t wait for the school to fix it and you shouldn’t …there’s a lot more you can do outside the school to help your kid get better.”

Does Bonnie’s story sound like yours? 

Do you have a bright child who is struggling and no one seems to really know why?

Are you being told that accommodations and lifelong challenges are the best you can expect?  And you’re NOT buying it?

I’m with you!  When bright children struggle with learning or attention, it is usually due to weak or inefficient underlying learning/processing skills.  In Bonnie’s son’s case, it was auditory processing.

What we know, from the last 30 years of brain research and our own work with thousands and thousands of children and adults is that most learning and attention challenges, including learning disabilities, dyslexia, and auditory processing disorders, can be dramatically improved or completely corrected.  The key is identifying and addressing the root cause of the issue.

Let’s use auditory processing as an example:  Auditory processing is how the brain perceives or thinks about the information coming in through the ears.  It’s not your hearing.

Weak auditory processing can make you feel like you’re hearing the message through water or on a bad cell phone connection.  The message coming in is intermittent or unclear so that you get some of the information but not all.  You may work so hard to get the message that you feel anxious or exhausted.  Maybe you feel confused or lost.  Your comprehension and attention are affected.  You may mispronounce words because you never quite perceive them correctly, or you say the wrong thing or something that’s just been said because you missed it.

Auditory processing delays can have a devastating impact on learning and social skills.  The child suffering with auditory processing disorder may be perceived as not very smart, ADHD (because it’s impossible to maintain attention when things don’t make sense), or a behavior problem.  But auditory processing problems have nothing to do with intelligence and an attention or behavior disorder diagnosis may be completely inappropriate.

So how do you deal with an auditory processing problem?  Or any learning problem?  You go to the root of the issue and retrain that system.  This is not going to happen at school or in traditional tutoring because they do not typically work with the underlying skills.

At Stowell Learning Center, we assess for and identify the weak underlying skills that are at the root of the challenges faced by struggling students.  We develop the underlying learning/processing skills and remediate reading, writing, speaking, spelling, and math so that students can become the most comfortable, independent learners they have the potential to be.

If you have a child who is struggling in school and you’re just not buying what you’re being told, we can help.

JOIN US for a FREE Parent Information Night to learn how things can change.

Click here for details and RSVP:


“Helping smart but struggling students dramatically improve or completely correct their learning and attention challenges by developing the underlying learning skills that are not supporting the learner well enough.”
We serve children and adults with diagnosed or undiagnosed learning and attention challenges including learning disabilities, dyslexia, ADHD, auditory processing disorders, and autism spectrum disorders.
Jill Stowell, M.S.
#1 Best-Selling Author:  At Wit’s End A Parent’s Guide to Ending the Struggle, Tears, and Turmoil of Learning Disabilities
Founder and Executive Director – Stowell Learning Centers

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