Are you looking for a special education professional who understands homeschooling and can help you with things like these . . .
- Evaluating your child for a learning disability,
- Transitioning special education services from the public school to private sources,
- Curriculum planning,
- Parent training, or
While using public school evaluation services is an option for homeschooled children in every state, many homeschooling families who have tried that route have found they can wind up with some unwanted legal entanglement. And for that reason, HSLDA recommends using private evaluations whenever possible.
There are a lot of benefits to including private special educational service providers or professionals in your support team for your child’s personalized educational program. If you’re wondering how this kind of professional assistance could be helpful, you can learn more here.
Now, if you’re specifically looking for at-home therapy such as occupational therapy, physical therapy, speech therapy, etc., you can discover more about your options here.
So, if you suspect your child has a learning disability, you might be wondering where you can find a private, licensed psychologist or educational diagnostician—who also understands and supports homeschooling—to test him or her?
- A great place to start is your state or local homeschool organizations, support groups, and co-ops. Many organizations such as these maintain lists of professionals and provide families with networking. You can locate a group near you on our page here.
- Psychology Today offers a search directory where you can find psychologists, therapists, and counselors in your area. It’s similar to Angie's List: you can read reviews describing other families’ experiences with the listed professionals as well as access the professionals’ profiles (including their professional backgrounds, philosophies, training and specializations, etc.).
- Other avenues for finding an evaluator:
- Inquire at a local university’s graduate school of educational psychology. Testing is cheaper going this route, as a graduate student being overseen by a licensed professional would do the evaluation.
- Ask for a referral through your family medical provider or pediatrician.
- If you are an HSLDA member, you receive access to our database of private homeschool-friendly licensed psychologists, educational diagnosticians, therapists, and other professionals. Contact HSLDA’s Special Needs Consultants to locate a provider in your zip code.
It’s true that many private special education professional services, especially psycho-educational testing, are often not covered under medical insurance and can be expensive to pay for out of pocket. However, if your family needs help with additional expenses associated with homeschooling a child with special needs, you can apply for an HSLDA Compassion Grant.
If you’re an HSLDA member and you have questions about working with a special education professional, please feel free to reach out to the Special Needs Consultants. We’d be happy to help!