Parenting a child who struggles in school brings with it a unique set of challenges, one of which is finding a school that takes a different approach to learning. Springer School and Center has provided that “different approach” to thousands of children with learning disabilities for over four decades. But I know that making the decision to change schools is a complicated one. Let’s talk about things that might go through parents’ minds as they consider sending their child to Springer.

Will my child feel different or singled out because he attends Springer?

Every student at Springer has a deficit in an academic area- reading, writing, or math. Just like each of those students, your child will get the strategic instruction that he needs, he will be empowered to ask questions in class, and he will grow in confidence. The benefits of a Springer education are endless and will be carried into his next environment.

A recent graduate, reflecting on his attendance at Springer, said, “My parents decided to make Springer my new school. I was finally happy in school, and the teachers understood me. A lot changed since I started at Springer. I now understand that I can do anything despite having a learning disability. I may struggle a little along the way, but anything is possible. Over the years, I have had so much fun and built so much confidence. I will miss the friendships and acceptance that Springer provided.”

I don’t want to take my child away from her friends.

The friends a child makes at Springer are friends who can understand her struggles because they struggle too. They can support and encourage, because they’re on the same path. A recent graduate said it best in her commencement speech. “I would like to thank all of the people who have helped me reach my goals that I set for myself!” she said. “I have met many friends along the way that I have gotten close to. I know that I will meet new friends, and teachers, but nobody is going to be as supportive and caring as the people at Springer!”

How is the environment at Springer different from that at a typical school?

We are a school for students in grades 1-8. Our students have art, library, music, and gym; but they also have access to a climbing wall, therapists when needed, and teachers who are experts in learning disabilities, who know our students intimately. Our students learn strategies that they will take with them to their next school environment.

Every student is at Springer because he or she is experiencing a great academic struggle. In their time at Springer, students learn how to accept the struggle, and move forward with tools and confidence into another setting. The culture at Springer is one that emphasizes problem solving and sensitivity to diversity, encouraging children to develop a mindset in which differences are valued and conflicts are negotiated.

Blogger and Director of Learning Programs, Carmen Mendoza, MEd, shares her expertise in understanding students with learning disabilities. If you have questions, please contact Carmen at cmendoza@springer-ld.org.


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