Developmental (intellectual) disabilities and syndromes like Autism and Asperger’s, are considered when the learner’s performance in the ordinary skills of childhood in academic, cognitive, or emotional domains have not appeared at grade appropriate levels. Developmental disabilities are diagnosed ...
Developmental disabilities are diagnosed when test performances in IQ, cognitive and/or academic tests ARE VERY WEAK, at the bottom 5 percentiles or lower.
Disorders such as Autism, Asperger’s Syndrome, and other conditions slow developmental rates and these children may not be ready by grade one to learn the primary grade skills of reading, writing, and math at the pace of their classmates. School may be extremely challenging for them and emotional behaviour, and behaviour disorders may also appear.
Although they often do not do well in group learning structures, even with an I.E.P., they can succeed when the program designed for them matches their abilities and works to build skills at a pace they can learn. They usually need smaller steps forward and more repetition and practice.
At the VLC, the one-to-one, individually designed process that is comprehensive and includes behaviour training using CBT and emotional development strategies, is often the best fit. Scores of VLC children with these conditions have succeeded and produced life outcomes well beyond expectations.
At the VLC, we now also know the brain is neuroplastic and can improve in skills and function when a different, strategic approach to teaching these learners is undertaken. The VLC’s individually designed, strategic, targeted program addresses its signature programs and services to the root cause of learning difficulties and developmental delay in each case in 4 ways:
- We establish goals and potential academic destinations by identifying and using the learners’ strengths.
- We address weaknesses (below grade level performance) by building new skill platforms in areas of weakness using a different approach to teaching them.
- We integrate both of the above by building success into current and future learning by the array of neurocognitive and academic programs and services set forth in each individual program at age appropriate levels in:
- Neurocognitive training
- Academic skills and executive function development
- Emotional maturity and regulation training
- Behaviour regulation using CBT (Cognitive Behaviour Therapy)
- The VLC’s Learning to Learn signature programs and services are taught at appropriate age and grade level so they can be used to grow strengths to challenge levels to:
- Build skills to grade level and work directly on emotional strength and regulation to inspire more mature behaviour
- Look ahead at their academic challenges directly (Week-Ahead Program) and use teaching, coaching and practice strategies to reduce their challenges to manageable levels if they are attending regular classes at their grade level
- If they cannot proceed at grade level special measures that determine progress according to their ability will be applied