I'm wondering if anyone teacher or not, has any experience, suspicion, or opinion on a this topic...long story short, I have been hearing about kids in my son's private school being referred to certain professionals. There is a behavioural optometrist, an occupational therapist, a speech psychologist and a paediatric psychologist whose names come up quite often in conversation. Now, I know a professional of this capacity can be very beneficial, but there should be a small percentage of children who could benefit from their services (or so I thought). Hearing about which child is seeing whom made me realise how blessed I am to have two children that don't need learning or behavioural support. Until we went to parent child interviews last week and got handed a sheet with the names of these four professionals, their contact details, and a star next to the behavioural optometrist's name. My son's two grade one teachers are concerned about his messy handwriting and the fact that he doesn't like to do his writing in class, and also that his cutting (of paper) could use improvement. They think we should see this professional, even though my husband and I both agree, for various reasons, that he seems to see things properly. We did explain this but the teachers basically said that if we see this professional and things turn out to be fine, its something they can check off "the list". I left quite upset. He is on track or ahead in all other areas, but they focused on this problem for the whole 10 minutes.
Over the weekend my boys attended a birthday party and I had a few hours to chat with other mothers that I don't see as often. I know quite a few of these children well as they were in my son's prep class and I spent a lot of hours there last year helping with their activities. Two of the girls, who are young for their class (turning 6 in June) but are both right up there with the older kids and are very bright, have also been referred to specialists on the list for behavioural problems and suspected adhd(!) I am not a professional, but I can absolutely say that these kids are not problematic and there is no ADHD going on there.
I can't shake the thought that the teachers are getting some gain from referring these children to professionals. I can't bring this topic up with everyone,but I only know of one child in the class that has definitely not been referred to someone in the list. I do know that it will cost us $400 to see the behavioural optometrist and who knows how much Medicare contributes on top of that. The school consists mainly of children in higher income households, as it is a pricey private school. Could they be counting on the fact that these parents will spend whatever it takes to help their child? It seems as though we have a closeknit group of parents this year which is the reason I have learned about everything....I wonder if the teachers were expecting everything to stay hush-hush as most people don't like to talk about their child's problems.
Is it obviously unethical, but I can't find anything about this practice being illegal in Australia.
If anyone has actually finished this, thanks for reading and I'd love to hear what you have to say.