June 1, 2020
Despite the large number of people that have a learning disability, the diagnosis continues to generate more fallacy than fact. Below are some of the most difficult myths for students to overcome.
- People with learning disabilities are stupid. By definition those diagnosed with LD must have measurable intelligence ranging from average to high average. In fact, most have average or above average intelligence, and some have cognitive skills that distinguish them as gifted. Most students with LD also have talents that may not be recognized in the classroom.
- Students with LD are lazy. It is safe to assume that some people with LD are indeed lazy. However, this characteristic is neither limited to, nor diagnostic of LD. After struggling to understand their differences and acquire compensatory skills, most students with LD work harder than those for whom learning does not require special interventions or accommodations.
- LD can be cured. Although the market for new remedies seems infinite, science has not yet found a way to reconfigure the neurological programming that causes LD. Students, however, can eliminate many difficulties by using alternative pathways to learning. Embrace accommodations, but be wary of claims that offer a cure.
- Students with LD get unfair advantages. There will always be those who believe that people with accommodations are cheating the system. Some find learning disabilities hard to acknowledge because they are invisible. Nevertheless, it is important to stress that, just as a wheelchair ramp provides access for people with physical disabilities, learning accommodations give students with LD equal access to knowledge and education.