Leon is a 12-year-old boy in Year 7 at a large metropolitan secondary school. It was identified from reports received during the enrolment process that Leon has a diagnosis of dyslexia. Information was also provided about the mental health difficulties Leon has been experiencing. Leon lives with his grandparents and has not lived with his biological parents since the age of two.
Leon had been accessing a private psychologist prior to starting Year 7. His grandparents gave consent for the psychologist to meet with the school counsellor to seek collaborative support for possible post-traumatic stress disorder symptoms. A formal diagnosis has not been made.
The counsellor was informed that Leon has difficulty sleeping and concentrating. He can feel jumpy, and displays irritable behaviours. He can also become socially withdrawn and may avoid social activities. The school counsellor and learning support teacher have provided Leon’s teachers with a learning profile, which is a summary sheet that outlines his learning challenges and suggests strategies to support his emotional needs and learning difficulties. Leon also received additional support with transition into Year 7 from the learning support teacher prior to formal school classes, and has been issued with a time-out card to access the ‘Chill-Out’ room when he feels overwhelmed and needs some quiet time.
Leon is allowed extra working time during timed assessments, and teachers provide him with class notes and slide presentations prior to lessons. He also has access to technologies in the classroom to support his reading and writing (eg tablet device, scanning pen). Teachers encourage Leon to use accessibility features on his tablet and school laptop, such as the speech-to-text and text-to-speech functions. In English, Humanities and Science subjects, teachers and teacher assistants provide additional assistance with reading and with structuring his writing. Leon and other students in his class have access to a mathematics tutor and he sometimes chooses to use this tutor when he has difficulty grasping a new concept.
The year level coordinator, school counsellor and a learning support teacher meet with Leon’s psychologist and guardian four times per year.