James Madison University wordmark

FAQ

How long is the evaluation?
The length of an evaluation varies depending upon the age of the child and the concerns being addressed. Younger children take less time than older children on average. The appointment letter you receive will give the time frame that you should expect to be at the CDC for the evaluation.

How long does it take to get the results of the evaluation?
Six to eight weeks after the evaluation takes place, the parent/guardian will receive a phone call to schedule an appointment to review the results of the evaluation. This appointment takes about an hour, and the clinicians try to schedule it at a convenient time for you.

What will I do while my child is being evaluated?
As the expert on your child, you will also be participating in the evaluation. Our clinicians will interview you about your child’s background in many different areas, such as behavior, education, and medical history, as well as have you complete questionnaires. In some cases, your family history will be discussed. Some of the questions may seem personal, but an accurate evaluation is dependent upon you being able to provide as much information as possible. The more information about your child and his/her environment we can gather, the better we can help you in helping your child.

What information should I bring to the evaluation?
The CDC will gather records from current/previous providers before the evaluation. However, if your child has received a recent report card or other school evaluations, please bring copies of those if you have them. Feel free to bring notes of points that you want to discuss, such as behaviors you are concerned about or observations you make with your child. You may want to note the type of symptoms, time of onset, severity, direction, stress, and things in life that were going on at the time of the observation.

Do I get to observe my child’s evaluation?
No, parent/guardian participation is a valuable component of the evaluation (as you know the child best) and occurs at the same time as the child’s assessment. You will be talking with other clinicians about your child’s history and your current concerns while your child is being evaluated.

Should my child take his or her medication(s) on the day of the evaluation?
Yes, please administer any regularly prescribed medications on the day of the evaluation and bring medications if your child takes a mid-day dose. In order to get the best possible test results from our evaluation, we want to see your child at his/her best. Our staff will talk with you about whether or not the medications help your child. Also, if possible please record a list of all medications your child is taking, with names, dates, and dosages. If you can recall previous medications, please record those as well.

Will lunch/snacks be provided?
No, it is recommended that each family bring along snacks and drinks on the evaluation day since there is not a vending machine in the building. You may bring a packed lunch or visit one of the several restaurants nearby during the lunch break.

Does the CDC provide child care for siblings?
No, the clinic staff cannot provide child care and the parent/legal guardian will be involved in interviews throughout the day. No children other than the child being evaluated should be brought to the appointment.

How can I help my child while we are waiting on our evaluation appointment?
Make sure your child is attending school on a regular basis as well as any medical/therapy appointments. Encourage your child to get a good night’s sleep, eat healthy snacks/meals, and participate in physical activities such as playing outdoors. Limit screen time and spend time playing games together or reading with your child.

Does the CDC do custody, attachment, or forensic evaluations?
No, the CDC does not provide custody, attachment, or forensic evaluations.

Will I be able to get an excuse note for my child’s school?
Yes, at the evaluation appointment please ask the clinic staff for a school absence letter.