Nonverbal Learning Disorder and Gifted... need info. - FamilyEducation
Nonverbal Learning Disorder and Gifted... need info.
05/18/2009 at 20:32 PM

Hello! Anyone here have a gifted child that is also classified as having a NVLD? (Nonverbal Learning Disorder) This is a category under Autism, apparently under the medical diagnoses, but not in the DSM IV - psychological diagnoses book.

I'm looking for information on NVLD. I've read two books. The one book was written in 1992, but I'd like to read something a little more current.... something that would compare scores of the WISC IV instead of the WISC III, which is what I've found in these older books.

To make a long story short.... my son was tested by the school district and had a high IQ qualifying him for gifted. We wrote up the goals for his GIEP.

We have testing set up soon, by a hospital for children, and we shared the test results of the school's testing along with the GIEP report and goals to the dr. we are dealing with at the hospital.

Little did we expect to hear that the dr. in charge of the hospital program is very unhappy about the school's testing and goals and thinks they are skirting around a diagnosis that should have been made. This dr. thinks my son has a NVLD disorder.

So now my husband and I are concerned. We even thought about not taking him for the testing at the hospital. What do we do if they come up with a diagnosis the school doesn't agree with and won't accomodate for? We certainly don't have money for a lawyer.

At this point our son has been pretty successful and happy. We work with him at home and over the summer and enrich him with many activities and experiences.

Anyone have any thoughts on what I just shared? Any sites to find out more on NVLD or current reads?

I'm concerned that he will get this label and it won't be accurate. He already has the labels as gifted and add. And as other posters have said.... bright kids can totally resemble that they have other disorders just because they are in their own worlds.


Hi Only, I don't have any experience w/ your son's specific issues, but I do have a child in special ed. I wld go ahead and get an outside eval and have your son tested. Get several opinions if you have to. In my son's case, it has helped him to get the services he needs. I wldn't worry so much about the label. Be more concerned w/ your son getting the right help he deserves. As for a lawyer, that shld be your last resort. We, too, can't afford a lawyer, but we learned that an advocate is much more affordable and can be very helpful as well. A website I found useful is You can find answers to many of your legal questions through them. Good luck to you and your son.

Please do as the previous poster has suggested. As a professional who has worked with many children whose parents did not want their child labeled autistic or were even in denial, the child needs and deserves to be correctly diagnosed. Also, my daughter has numerous issues, and although the diagnosis were upsetting, we got her whatever help she needed. At one meeting, when the Dr gave the diagnosis, I said, "My daughter could not possibly have that diagnosis, she just likes to do all those things!" So, just get the testing for your son and help him however he needs. You are already on the right path and will do what is best for your son. Good Luck!!

Hi ladies! Thanks for your suggestions. I'm not upset about him being in the autism spectrum. I am although concerned about him being wrongly diagnosed and not quite sure about how I will approach the school when he gets a list of accomodations that they should be making for him. I know it is going to come by a conversation with this dr. from the hospital. I guess I can see problems coming... but I'm going to think positively. :) Only

Only, Sit down w/ the school, and tell them exactly what accomodations you want for your son based on the knowledge and experience you have now. My son is in a class w/ an autistic boy, and he's receiving more services than this kid. That's b/c, thx to my son's dr and her recommendations, the school gave our son the services he needs. You have to push for what you want, and always speak up. We are in a position now where we know the school wants our son in district, and b/c of that they are offering him many appealing options. They are willing to sit down w/ us and negotiate the accomodations we are looking for for our son. It is in their best interest to do this, rather than for them to pay for the private school he is currently in. So, we'll see. Feel out your school, and see what they're willing to give you. Educate yourself on your rights, and don't make any hasty decisions. Every district is different. It's helped us also to talk to other parents whose kids are now in district and get their feedback. It's your child, so you know what's best. Just be careful what you agree to. If you feel uncomfortable about anything, speak up. Don't feel you have to accept anything you don't want to. As for being wrongly diagnosed, I often worry about that also. Go only to drs that come highly recommended, and get several opinions. It has come to our attention that our son may be showing signs of ADD, and I worry that if the dr diagnoses him w/ this, the school will push for him to be on medication. Both my husband and I are not keen on the idea of medicating our son. There will always be concerns, but you are the final decision maker. Good luck!