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Ottawa, Ontario, August 27, 2007 – As students prepare to return to school with notebooks, pens and the latest school fashions, many students with learning disabilities, like dyslexia, dysgraphia, or auditory processing disabilities are struggling with anxiety and fear. Their “Bcak to Scool” experience is anything but exciting.
In recognition of the daily struggle of over 3,000,000 Canadians who have learning disabilities, the Learning Disabilities Association of Canada (LDAC) today releases its new Policy Statement on Educational Accommodations for Individuals with Learning Disabilities who continue to fall through the cracks of Canada’s educational system.
Developed over the past 3 years by leading experts in the field, the Policy Statement provides guidelines to Ministries of Education, school districts, teachers, parents/guardians, and individuals with learning disabilities to use for policy development, administration, selection, and evaluation of accommodations for students with learning disabilities. LDAC is requesting that Ministries of Education and post-secondary educational institutions across Canada endorse and implement this new Policy.
“This is a historical moment for the Learning Disabilities Association of Canada. The endorsement of its Educational Accommodations Policy would mean that 1 in 10 Canadians who have learning disabilities are guaranteed full access to appropriate accommodations,” said Lynn Green, Vice-Chair of the Learning Disabilities Association of Canada. “This consistent and equitable approach would allow Canadians with learning disabilities to pursue their education and optimize their potential in accordance with the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms and the Human Rights legislation of the provinces and territories,” added Ms. Green, whose daughter filed a human rights case after struggling with inadequate and inappropriate supports from her university.
The Learning Disabilities Association of Canada (LDAC) is a volunteer-led association representing a network of 10 provincial and 2 territorial Learning Disabilities Associations. From these extends a network of chapters in some 55 communities across the country with more than 7,000 members across Canada that provides a comprehensive network of programs and resources. LDAC formulates public policy statements on critical issues in the field of learning disabilities (LD). It works with its network, policymakers, other national organizations, and experts to ensure that the specific needs of people with learning disabilities are fully considered in the development of federal and provincial policies. LDAC advocates for policies to protect and strengthen rights and opportunities of individuals with learning disabilities to enable them to function as citizens with equitable opportunities and to develop to their individual potential.
* Accommodations are the support, tools, and services that help accomplish a goal, but which do not change the integrity of a learning task (e.g. books on tape, extra time for tests and exams, copies of handouts, a note-taker, editorial assistance, use of a calculator, speech recognition software, spelling checker, etc.) Accommodations compensate for learning disabilities, and vary from person to person based on the type of disability and the degree to which it interferes with daily activities.
Just in time for “Bcak to Scool,” the Learning Disabilities Association of Canada launches Right to Learn. Designed to draw governments’ attention to issues surrounding learning disabilities, the campaign features an on-line national petition, printable petitions, videos, and more. The goal is to mobilize, educate, and energize Canadians to endorse LDAC’s new Policy Statement, which gives all Canadians with learning disabilities the Right to Learn!
Claudette Larocque, Director of Public Policy and Programs
Learning Disabilities Association of Canada (LDAC)
250 City Centre Avenue, Suite 616, Ottawa, Ontario K1R 6K7
Toll fre: 1-877-238-5332 Tel: 613-238-5721
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