If you want to get to the heart of the matter, then a Psychoeducational Assessment is recommended. The earlier you figure out the problem, the sooner you can come up with solutions.
In Vivian’s case, her parents understood that some growing pains would be expected at the start of French Immersion. Everyone in Vivian’s household speaks English, so learning in French would be an entirely new experience for her. But they hoped their daughter would catch on quickly, since she’s always been a smart child who could solve problems easily.
Despite her intelligence, Vivian began to struggle in Grade 1. Her teacher provided her with extra support to try and fill in gaps in her learning. Compared to classmates, though, Vivian’s challenges in French Immersion seemed bigger and much harder for the teacher to address. At home, Vivian’s parents noted difficulties spelling and reading in English, too. Vivian had seen very few English words as part of her schooling in French, so it made sense that spelling and reading in English would be challenging for her. But difficulties learning in French continued through Grade 2.
Now in Grade 3, Vivian’s classmates are learning at a pace expected by the teacher. However, Vivian is still struggling. She struggles to pay attention when the teacher is speaking French. She struggles to understand what is being asked of her when tasks must be done. She struggles to understand her French textbooks. And when she writes, her guesses at French spellings look much different than the attempts of her classmates. Vivian’s parents and teacher now wonder if Vivian has a Learning Disability.
Attention testing should happen in her strongest language, too, so poor understanding of French doesn’t get in the way of Vivian’s focus.
Academic testing should happen in both English and French. That way, clinicians can see how the brain is learning in the language it’s being exposed to at school—which is French—and how learning is happening in English, the language spoken at home. Comparing the kinds of errors made in both English and French helps clinicians determine whether the difficulties in French learning are to be expected, or stemming from a Learning Disability.
At Possibilities, our Psychoeducational Assessments are called Signature Assessments. For predominantly English-speaking students receiving French instruction at school, our Signature Assessments with additional French components are divided into French and English testing in this way.
Once the doctor’s referral is received, and the Intake Form has been completed, our Care Coordinator will get back to you with booking options.
Please note that we are currently unable to provide our French testing option to students within CSViamonde, since our French clinician provides services to this school board. Check back here to receive updates about our ability to assess CSViamonde students in future.