When your child is struggling at school, it’s imperative to know why.
For 20+ years, Dr. Deanna Gumina has used comprehensive cognitive assessments to uncover precisely how students are struggling. By pinpointing the specific issues, highlighting areas of strength, and implementing immediate interventions, she is able to help parents and students create a path forward.
Perhaps most importantly, understanding oneself through detailed assessment creates resiliency. The confidence of being able to do any task presented – on your own terms and with the knowledge of how you do your best work – is what leads to success at school and in life. Taking a “wait and see” approach leads to unnecessary frustration and failure.
No question, assessment is an investment – in your child, her or his well-being, and the overall tranquility of your family life.
Where, what, how?
Testing can bring up anxiety, so Dr. Gumina works hard to put everyone at ease. Her office, on the bottom floor of her home, is warm and inviting. Emma, her loving Cavalier King Charles Spaniel, loves to be read to and helps many children with the confidence to practice reading out loud.
Dr. Gumina reviews every report with parents page by page, to ensure an understanding of her findings. As a psychologist with decades of experience in assessing children, teens and adult, she helps parents understand how a child’s lack of motivation in school or behavioral changes.
Testing includes timed and untimed sections, use of pencil and paper, and oral testing. She assesses reading, writing, math and patterns, time management and organization. Dr. Gumina studies student’s attention. Their behavior. How they visually process information. What does his handwriting say about him? How is her memory? Is a child responsive? Respectful? How does she advocate for herself?
Dr. Gumina writes a confidence-building letter to every student, explaining what she sees in them. She explains that just as everyone has a unique fingerprint, everyone has unique ways of learning. Students often ask, “What is ‘it’ that gets in my way of learning?” and “How do I improve?” Dr. Gumina explains strategies that will enable them to work more efficiently and effectively in the classroom and at home.
After testing is completed, Dr. Gumina explains her findings in a detailed 25+ page report. It starts with a summary written in plain English, with examples from the testing. What follows are well defined sections, including those that give a diagnosis, an outline of strengths and weaknesses, the scores and actual percentiles of student achievement, and descriptions of how the student performed on all the sub tests.
When requested, Dr. Gumina will meet with school counselors or teachers to explain her findings. Her experience working within schools, means she understands the curricula of classrooms, remediation, IEPs and how to integrate students’ challenges.