At Home and at School: Working as a Team to Help a Child with TBI

[Dr. Ann Glang] From the school's perspective, they need to meet parents in the same way that parents need to meet them—that is, it's really a collaboration. Schools need to respect and understand what the family has been through, and perhaps develop a little empathy and understand that this is a unique situation. This family was watching their child develop typically, and now this event has happened that's thrown the family into a tailspin, and the child is a different person. The family needs to figure out how to help that child at school. That's tough, so just understanding them and having just a respect for that. Secondly, I would say being a good listener on the school's part, so back to school night saying to mom, "Tell me about your child." Sitting back and listening. I think a lot of times, schools are under so much pressure to get things done, and teachers get through the curriculum, and manage this, and make that happen, it's very rare that they have an opportunity to sit and listen, and I think if that could happen more, and just again, some of those problem-solving and collaboration skills could be more in place, people would get a lot more creative about serving these kids, and we would have a lot fewer problems and conflicts between families and schools.

Listening, showing empathy, being respectful, and opening up to creative collaboration are all key ways parents and teachers can work together to help a child with brain injury.

See more video clips with Dr. Ann Glang.

Ann Glang

Ann Glang, PhD is a research professor and co-director of the Center on Brain Injury Research and Training (CBIRT), a center under the office of Research, Innovation and Graduate Education (RIGE) at the University of Oregon.

Posted on BrainLine August 12, 2013.

Produced by Noel Gunther, Justin Rhodes, and Erica Queen, BrainLine.