Q:

My daughter recently told me that two of her four children have been diagnosed with learning disabilities. Does this mean that they will never do well in school? Exactly what are learning disabilities? -- No Knowledge

A:

A learning disability is one or more disorders that affect how children learn. The three main types of disorders are reading disabilities, written language disabilities and math disabilities. The general public needs to understand that having a learning disability does not mean that you have an intellectual disability.

Being diagnosed with learning disabilities definitely does not mean that your grandchildren will never do well in school. Many people with learning disabilities have had outstanding success in their lives. This includes such well-known people as Cher, Tom Cruise and Whoopi Goldberg. It is even believed that some of the founding fathers of our country, including George Washington, Thomas Jefferson and Benjamin Franklin, may have had learning disabilities.

Your grandchildren may do very well in school because a school team working with your daughter will have developed an Individualized Education Program (IEP) that is geared toward helping each child in his or her specific areas of difficulty. This academic intervention should help your grandchildren succeed in school.