CAPD Diagnosis -- Now What Do I Do?

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Find out how to get more information about central auditory processing disorder (CAPD) and how it can impact your child's learning.
Q
My child was diagnosed with central auditory processing disorder. Now what do I do? The school doesn't want to do anything and the doctors don't think this is a medical condition. I have a smart child -- we just can't communicate. Who do I talk to next?
A
First, you can get more information about central auditory processing disorder (CAPD) and how it can impact your child's learning at FamilyEducation.com. You can also go to LD Online (www.ldonline.org) and do a search on this topic for more information.

Second, ask to have a full psychoeducational evaluation done at your child's school or school district if this has not already been done. You need to see if the CAPD is affecting her academic progress. If it is, under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) the school must provide appropriate services to her as well as accommodations in the classroom. If she is functioning appropriately at this point, you can still ask for accommodations under Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973. There must be a Section 504 facilitator either in your school or school district. Present the results of testing you have and ask for appropriate accommodations for your child.

You may not be able to get direct services if her CAPD is not having an immediate effect on her performance in school, but you can at least receive accommodations. These can include preferential seating, extended time on tests, the use of an FM unit to enhance sound in the classroom, and more. The audiologist who determined she had CAPD should be able to help you to decide what accommodations to ask for.

If you need to find someone to help you navigate the "system," try contacting the Coordinated Campaign for Learning Disabilities (www.aboutld.org). They should be able to steer you to a local advocacy group in your community that can help.

For more than 20 years, Eileen Marzola has worked with children and adults with learning disabilities and attention deficit disorders, and with their parents and teachers. She has been a regular education classroom teacher, a consultant teacher/resource teacher, an educational evaluator/diagnostician, and has also taught graduate students at the university level. Marzola is an adjunct assistant professor of education at Teachers College, Columbia University, and Hunter College of the City University of New York. She also maintains a private practice in the evaluation and teaching of children with learning disabilities and attention deficit disorders.

Please note: This "Expert Advice" area of FamilyEducation.com should be used for general information purposes only. Advice given here is not intended to provide a basis for action in particular circumstances without consideration by a competent professional. Before using this Expert Advice area, please review our General and Medical Disclaimers.