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Tutoring Special Needs Children

*Tutors of students with Special Needs can best tutor their students by being aware of legal issues that can impact the education of children with Special Needs. Many of these children have documented disabilities, and/or are students entitled to services under Section 504 and various portions of the ADA (American with Disabilities Act). The students' rights under these statutes often result in a decrease in the amount of homework, and the type of homework that they must complete.
 
These students may be granted special accommodations to help them complete their homework and take tests. For example, a student with Special Needs may be allowed to use calculators, even when others students aren't, they may get to take tests designed just for them, be entitled to consider different school placements, have the type and number of homework problems adjusted down, and/or receive certain accommodations, like extended time, while taking college entrance exams such as the SAT/ACT. Special Needs issues now apply in colleges and universities, as well.
 
Tutors of students with Special Needs may find out their tutee has an IEP (Individualized Educational Program) chart. IEP provisions usually ease the burden and requirements of homework, test preparation, and the actual tests. If the tutor is aware of any accommodations in the chart, the tutor can help the student prepare his homework and prepare for an upcoming test in the best way possible that is consistent with the student's accommodations. Tutors may need to ask parents about the IEP accommodations their child has been granted.
 
Some parents are well-versed in their children's accommodations. Some parents are not. Tutors of students with IEPs (and others, for example, who are students with ADD/ADD Non-Hyperactive/ADHD), may want to discuss the situation with a Special Needs Tutor Consultant.
 
Jennifer is an Education Law Attorney and Special Needs Consultant. She advocates for Children with Special Needs to make sure they get the accommodations to which they are entitled.

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