It is clear that the term “many impairments” refers to more than one condition. Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) uses the term differently. The IDEA defines “many disabilities” as a disability category. As you might imagine, a child with multiple disabilities has at least two debilitating conditions that impair their ability to learn or perform other essential tasks.

Multiple Disabilities vs. Multiple Diagnosis

It’s vital to remember that “many disabilities” and “multiple diagnoses” are two different things. This is because a child may be diagnosed numerous times by multiple practitioners but not be considered to have many disabilities. 

To give just one example, a child with high functioning autism spectrum condition may have been diagnosed with a number of other disorders before finally receiving the autism diagnosis. Several of the extra diagnoses indeed reflect symptoms that fall under the autism spectrum disorder umbrella.

*Image source: Unsplash/Pixelbay/Pexels

Students with “many disabilities” must have conditions that are so severe that their educational needs cannot be met by programs dedicated to just one of their impairments. This means that children with cerebral palsy and those with cognitive challenges and sensory disabilities like blindness may be eligible for the program.

It’s possible that two disabilities don’t count as “many disabilities” under some circumstances. It’s not considered “many disabilities” when a youngster has both visual and auditory impairments. Deaf-blindness is, in fact, recognized as a disability in its own right. ADHD and sensory issues are two problems that are likely to be treated in an ADHD classroom; thus, a child with ADHD and sensory issues is unlikely to qualify.

Multiple Disabilities in the Classroom

*Image source: Pexels/Unsplash/Pixelbay

People who suffer from various disabilities are generally limited in their capacity to move, communicate or otherwise interact socially. They may potentially be suffering from significant cognitive impairment. The result is that highly qualified teachers and various specialized tools are used to teach them.

It is generally suggested that children with various disabilities be included in school activities whenever possible.

Teaching Aids For Children With Multiple Disabilities

Technology and other augmentative and alternative communication resources are some of the most valuable and crucial tools for teaching and engaging kids with different disabilities. There are many choices for children who cannot talk or have difficulty moving. Among them:

  1. Simple cards with pictures.
  2. Specially designed keyboards for people who have problems with their fine motor skills.
  3. Text-to-voice, picture selection, and other communication apps for iPads and comparable devices.
*Image source: Pexels/Pixelbay/Unsplash

Other educational aids that might be helpful to students with severe multiple disabilities include:

  1. Text-to-speech conversion software.
  2. Educational apps that enhance the pre-writing and writing process.
  3. Curricula that offer diverse options for students with different learning styles or abilities.

Parents with Kids Who Have Multiple Disabilities

Given the right resources and opportunities, a student with various disabilities may be able to learn and accomplish at a high level. Parents of children with various disabilities must take an active role in developing and evaluating their child’s educational and social support plans.

*Image source: Unsplash/Pixelbay/Pexels

Parents of children with learning difficulties should consider their personal health and well-being. When your child is in special education, most of what you hear and learn will be about how you can support your child. However, parents have their own set of requirements.

Stress is a normal part of life, but it doesn’t have to be all the time. While caring for a child with special needs, there are more time and patience requirements. You also have less time to socialize with friends or engage in leisure activities to decompress. The cumulative effect of all of this tension is high. 

No matter how many times you’ve been told to prioritize your personal well-being, it’s still essential.