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The Power to
The Power to
“My learning disability has
challenged me throughout
high school, but I never let
it hold me back.”
– J. Feldman,
Getting a teenager ready for college takes a lot of work,
and if your child has learning disabilities (LD), you prob-
ably need to do even more planning.
Below is a checklist
of transition-related issues that can help you anticipate and
address your child’s needs as a high school junior or senior
planning to go to college.
Gather information from colleges:
Identify key differences in rights and responsibilities at
the college level
Find contact information for disability services offices
of potential colleges
Understand the scope of disability services available
Know the documentation requirements
Identify available academic support services (tutoring,
writing labs, etc.).
Evaluate current accommodations and supports for
appropriateness at the college level.
Discuss accommodations for the SAT or ACT with
parents and counselors.
Consider summer pre-college programs for students
Visit the disability services offices when touring the
college and ask any questions that you may have.
Make sure that the student can describe how his or her
condition will impact the following aspects of learning
Classes (lectures, laboratory, web-based, collaborative
Assignments (reading, writing, calculating, keyboarding,
Communication (speaking, listening, using phones, using
Evaluation (tests, papers, oral reports, group
Time constraints (timed tests, deadlines, assignment
Attendance (class, required activities, residential living
Make sure that the student can explain how
accommodations compensate for the impacts of his or
her disability on the aspects of learning listed above.
Identify assistive technology that will be needed
after high school, such as a screen reader or dictation
software, books on tape, and PDA (personal digital
assistant, i.e. Palm Pilot) that includes a calendar and
Review and supplement the Summary of Performance
required by the Individuals with Disabilities Education
Act (IDEA). The Summary of Performance should provide:
A Checklist for High
School Juniors and Seniors
Planning to Go to College
By L. Scott Lissner
Coming this Spring
The RTI Action Network is a new national initiative of NCLD dedicated
to the responsible and effective implementation of Response to Interven-
tion (RTI) as a means of improving educational outcomes for all students.