Poor school performance not only results in the child having a low self-esteem, but also causes significant stress to the parents. There are many reasons for children to under perform at school, such as, medical problems, below average intelligence, specific learning disability, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, emotional problems, poor socio-cultural home environment, psychiatric disorders and even environmental causes.
The information provided by the parents, classroom teacher and school counselor about the child's academic difficulties guides the pediatrician to form an initial diagnosis. However, a multidisciplinary evaluation by an ophthalmologist, otolaryngologist, counselor, clinical psychologist, special educator, and child psychiatrist is usually necessary before making the final diagnosis. It is important to find the reason(s) for a child's poor school performance and come up with a treatment plan early so that the child can perform up to full potential.