Rett syndrome is a neurological disorder that almost exclusively affects girls. Patients have varying degrees of cognitive, motor, behavioral, and speech problems. These problems can be severely limiting, especially for schooling.
Parents, educators, and therapists need to identify the right schooling program based on the needs and the capabilities of each child.
Determining factors for schooling children with Rett syndrome
Learning styles and strengths differ for each child with Rett syndrome. There are several challenges that need to be considered. These include:
- The child’s mobility status
- Cognitive abilities
- The level of fine and gross motor skills
- Fatigue levels for a particular learning activity
- Factors that stress the child or make her anxious.
Individual education programs
An individual education program includes setting specific annual goals and short-term objectives based on the student’s needs. Based on this program, the student must be placed in the least restrictive environment appropriate for them.
The student also should be given an opportunity to interact with other children in academic, nonacademic, and extracurricular activities as much as possible.
Classroom modifications required
Most schools offer several options for educating children with disabilities, such as special education classrooms. Classroom activities may need to be modified or adapted to accommodate the needs of a child with Rett syndrome. These include:
- Allowing the student to express answers in a different form, such as pointing at pictures, for example
- Allowing a personal aid or classroom assistant to help the student
- Using music therapy to motivate the student to better communicate and learn
- Allowing the child to use a computer or tablet for school purposes
- Providing students and their families with the schedule and routine of day-to-day activities in the classroom
- Identifying classroom equipment that can help the child, in consultation with the parents and an occupational therapist.
- Ensuring the child participates in all classroom activities as much as possible
- Using augmentative communication tools such as eye gaze devices and learning apps when possible
Apart from schooling programs at home, public, private, or special education institutions, there are several online resources available for parents who have a child with Rett syndrome. Rett University is an excellent example because it contains both e-learning resources and information that guides parents about educational resources available.
There also are software programs available for various learning goals for children with disabilities, including Rett syndrome.
Rett Syndrome News Today is strictly a news and information website about the disease. It does not provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. This content is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or another qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read on this website.