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Learning Support in the Upper School

Upper School Learning Specialist

The Upper School learning specialist provides support for students with learning differences and academic support for all Upper School students when they encounter a learning or academic difficulty related to organization, time management, or study skills. The learning specialist maintains and updates the extended time list for students who qualify for it, and applies for extended time for the national tests like the SAT and ACT. Additionally, the learning specialist also provides support to teachers when needed or requested.

Support for Any Student

  • One-on-one consultation with the Learning Specialist to discuss academic skill strategies, organizational skills, time-management skills, etc.
  • Academic support when the student scores 69 or lower in his/her progress report or quarter report cards
  • Counselor support for emotional and social issues associated with any learning difficulty
  • Students may seek extra help from teachers before school and during the day when they are mutually free. Furthermore, conferencing between faculty and students is available on designated days during the Assembly Period. Students who wish to attend an extra-help session after school should notify their teacher (or faculty tutor) and coach at least one day in advance, if possible.
  • All students are given the opportunity to schedule a study period. The prudent student uses this time productively for exam review, homework completion or appointments with teachers.
  • Fort Worth Country Day provides a wide variety of information resources on the Internet and the campus intranet for the purpose of research and education. Network use must be consistent with the educational objectives of FWCD.

Students with Diagnosed Learning Differences

To be considered for accommodations, the division learning specialist must have a copy of the educational evaluation from the diagnostician/psychologist on file. The learning specialist will verify that the documentation meets basic guidelines and will notify teachers that the student qualifies for accommodations. Although FWCD is unable to offer specific accommodations that fundamentally change our mission, programs, policies, or staffing, we do provide “reasonable” accommodative supports when there is a specific diagnosis provided from an updated evaluation.
The most commonly granted accommodation in the Upper School is extended time. If approved for extended time, the student may receive up to 50 percent extra time (time-and-a-half) on a test or quiz. The student should alert the teacher no later than the day before the exam or quiz for which the extra time is requested, and the student must not miss another class to complete the exam or quiz.

Students approved for extended time may use the accommodation during semester exams. If a student chooses to take an exam with extended time, he/she is encouraged to maximize the full benefit of the testing window. For example, each student testing with the 50 percent extra-time accommodation on a regular one and one-half-hour exam requires the student to sit for a minimum of one hour and 55 minutes. All Upper School students do their schoolwork under the guidelines of the FWCD Honor Code.

Semester exams for extended time testing begin at 9:45 a.m. for morning exams and extend until 3:45 p.m. for afternoon exams.

Students approved for any accommodation are responsible for making mutually agreeable arrangements with their teachers. The accommodation must not interfere with the student’s work in other classes.

Requesting Accommodations on College-Related Tests

Receiving accommodation at Fort Worth Country Day in no way assures a student of accommodations on tests administered by The College Board and ACT. Students with a learning or physical disability must apply for accommodations with the appropriate testing agency for extended time and other accommodations on standardized tests (e.g., PSAT, SAT, ACT Plus Writing, AP, etc.).

The College Board consent form to request accommodations (PSAT, SAT, AP) and the application for ACT National Testing are available in the Learning Specialist’s Office. Students and parents should submit these respective forms and all previous educational evaluations to the Upper School learning specialist or the College Counseling Office according to the testing agencies’ deadlines.

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  • Documentation Guidelines

    The student must have documentation on file at school that:

    1. States a specific disability and includes a “DSM” diagnosis code
    2. Is current—within the last three years
    3. Provides relevant educational, developmental and medical history
    4. Includes the detailed results of a battery of educational testing with a complete achievement test and a complete cognitive test, as minimum
    5. Describes the specific accommodations requested
    6. Establishes the professional credentials of the evaluator
    7. Addresses other requirements based on an individual student’s circumstances

Contact the Specialist

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  • Photo of Laura Michaelides

    Mrs. Laura Michaelides 

    Upper School Learning Specialist
    (817) 302-3298
    University of Delaware - B.S.
    University of Delaware - M.Ed.
4200 Country Day Lane, Fort Worth, TX 76109
Phone: 817.732.7718
Fort Worth Country Day (FWCD) is a JK-12 private, independent, coeducational, nondenominational college-preparatory school located on approximately 100 acres in Fort Worth, Texas. The mission of Fort Worth Country Day School is to foster the intellectual, physical, emotional, and ethical development of capable students through an academically rigorous college preparatory program that integrates the arts and athletics.

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  • Website Accessibility Statement

    Fort Worth Country Day is committed to understanding and respecting differences. To further support that initiative, FWCD is focused on making the information on our website accessible to all students, parents, and other members of the community. Achieving our goal of making the FWCD website fully accessible requires auditing numerous sections and correcting elements with minimal disruption for daily users.

    We appreciate your patience as we transition our content to a format that more closely adheres to the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines 2.0 (WCAG 2.0) recommended by the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C). Additionally, some pages of the FWCD website may contain links to third party sites that do not comply with accessibility standards and not within the range of the School’s control.

    For questions about the FWCD website, please contact Web Content Manager, Tiffini Crum at  tiffini.crum@fwcd.com.

    Learn more about Fort Worth Country Day’s Mission, Philosophy, Core Values and Commitment to Inclusivity.