The Survival Guide for Kids in Special Education (And Their Parents) (Paperback)

Understanding What Special Ed Is & How It Can Help You

By Wendy L. Moss, Ph.D., Denise M. Campbell, M.S.

Free Spirit Publishing, 9781631981678, 184pp.

Publication Date: February 9, 2017

List Price: 14.99*
* Individual store prices may vary.


Tools, strategies, and advice help kids in special ed build on their strengths and be their best in and out of school.

When kids learn they might receive special education, they often have questions and worries. This book gives kids lots of tools and strategies they can use to deal with their concerns, whether they are in the process of being evaluated for special ed or already receiving special ed services. Readers will learn to cope with their challenges, understand reasons for testing, and see the benefits of accepting special education supports.

The book includes special features such as:
  • Stories about kids’ experiences with special education drawn from the authors’ conversations with hundreds of students
  • Approachable and relatable explanations of individual education plans (IEPs) and 504 plans for both parents and kids
  • Reproducible forms to help kids think about their strengths, challenges, goals, worries, and more
  • A section just for parents addressing common questions

About the Author

Wendy L. Moss, Ph.D., ABPP, FAASP, has over thirty years’ experience working with children and families as a psychologist in schools, clinics, hospitals, and private practice. She earned her doctorate in clinical psychology, is a certified school psychologist, and has been appointed as a fellow in the American Academy of School Psychology. She has also been awarded the status of a “Diplomate in School Psychology” by the American Board of Professional Psychology. Dr. Moss is the author of several books, including Being Me: A Kid’s Guide to Boosting Confidence and Self-Esteem. She lives in New York State.

Denise M. Campbell, M.S., SLP, SDA, has enjoyed a dynamic career as a speech pathologist and later as a school district administrator. Over the years, she has conducted evaluations and provided instructional services to hundreds of children and developed positive relationships with families. She has worked with children affected by a myriad of disabilities. She is the proud parent of five wonderful children, and in her spare time she enjoys reading, cooking, and camping. She lives in New York State.    

Praise For The Survival Guide for Kids in Special Education (And Their Parents): Understanding What Special Ed Is & How It Can Help You

2017 Moonbeam Children’s Book Award, Gold Medal

“This manual for navigating special education is a must-have.”—School Library Journal

“Affordable, relatable, and interactive, this title is recommended for both school and public libraries.”—School Library Connection

The Survival Guide for Kids in Special Education (And Their Parents) deserves to be in every middle grade, high school, and public library collection, and it is a ‘must-have’ for children with special education needs and their families. Highly recommended!”—Children’s Bookwatch

“This book is a much-needed resource for students with special needs and their families. It provides a wealth of information that covers every possible experience they may encounter as they go through this process. It is engaging, easy to read, and kid friendly. It is full of useful strategies and checklists and gives students excellent ways to utilize the information presented by the authors. Parents will finally have a way to provide crucial information to their child in a nonthreatening and reassuring manner.”—Dr. Barry E. McNamara, assistant dean and professor of education at Concordia College

“As a mother of three children who have learning disabilities, I wish I would have had a resource like this from the beginning. One of the biggest obstacles my children have faced is the low self-esteem that results from their disabilities. This book offers suggestions for how students can gain a better understanding of their learning differences, how they can advocate for themselves, and how they can put a plan into place that will benefit them. When students feel they have some control over their learning and are an important part of the process, they will succeed. This book is an excellent source for educating students with learning disabilities about the process and how it works. It gives them permission to be frustrated with their situation but also gives them the tools to thrive.”—Tara Belfi, president of the Special Education Parent Teacher Association for Cold Spring Harbor School District

The Survival Guide for Kids in Special Education (And Their Parents) by Wendy Moss and Denise Campbell offers a unique tool for students and their families. The authors’ combined experience working in the field of special education has given us a valuable resource. Intended for student use, this distinct guide provides the reader with a compassionate understanding of student experiences and a window for support. It serves as a practical tool for families and children involved in the special education process. Helpful suggestions, recipes for student success, and reproducible student self-assessment activities create a reader-friendly comprehensive coach for all.”—Gary LaFemina, assistant director of Elementary & Preschool Special Education Manhasset School District

2017 National Indie Excellence Award Winner