Q:

My eighth-grader is a smart child, but she simply doesn't know how to do well in school. For several years, I have had tutors working with her in almost every subject, and even her teachers have tried to help. She does fine when she works with them, but she has problems handling tests, quizzes and homework. How can I help her to do better in school? - Baffled

A:

It's time to find out why your daughter is still having problems after receiving so much special help. Make a request in writing, asking the school to make a full assessment of your child's abilities, achievement level and learning style. This should tell you and her teachers exactly what needs to be done to make schoolwork easier for your child.

It's important for you to discover why your daughter can do well one-on-one with a tutor or teacher but is unable to work alone or in a group situation. Perhaps you will discover that she has an attention problem. There is also the possibility that she has poor study skills. And, of course, the possibility of a learning disability should be considered. If you continue to have tutors for your child, the assessment should give them the information they need to really help her.