School and ADD

My son is 12, he is in grade 6, he as ADD, anxiety disorder and learning disorder.

He was in a school where he had an the help of a special educator every day, a special work plan adjusted to his capacity and needs, and was exempted from social studies and sciences. We moved to a different place last October and to this date, the new school is still saying they want to reevaluate him before doing anything for him. So they leave him in a regular class with all the regular school work to do on his own.

The thing my son would want the most, would be to be like his friends and be able to do it all, just like them. he feels like a failur, he feels let down, he feels like a cheet because his teachers get him to do 10 words instead of 20 and gives him sometimes more time to finish a test.

He comes home from school frustrated and overwhelmed... his anxiety level is to the roof and he is having many panic attack a day. we sometimes do from 2 to 3 hours of work a day at home just to get him caught up with his school work. It is very stressful and the tension is terrible.

His 3 teachers called me after Christmas to report to me that my son is not keeping up with the class, he is not concentrating, he is no al cooperating... and one of him actualy made him sound like he was plainly lazy. lol We all were at a meeting, back in October, to talk about him, for them to understand my son. And now it sounds as if it comes as a surprise!!

I am at the point where I feel like keeping him out of school and home school him, I don,t know what to do anymore! I want to be able to help him. I know he works well with me. He can concentrate better, and can get some stuff done faster and easily compared to the class he is in, where they all say the noise is unbeleivable. I want to propose to the school to go there on a daily bases to help him keep up with the work... I doubt they will agree!

What am I supposed to do? S.O.S.!!!

Queenbee, I’m sorry about this tough situation. I don’t know the special education terminology or laws in Canada. What is a T-R? I’m in the USA, and education laws are federal laws but states, school districts, and schools can vary in “service delivery”, or designing and following through on special education services that are documented in the student’s IEP, Individualized Education Plan.
It’s made up of goals and objectives, plus who is responsible for measuring the child’s progress, and how any special teaching is given and by who.
Inclusion is the concept that learning in the regular classroom along with peers is important. It’s thought to be the “least restricttive environment” for most students, rather than taking special ed student to a sparate room for instruction. Ideally, classroom supports are sufficient for a child to succeed, with the same curriculum and requirements as the other students. When that’s not working, a plan must be created that gives the student educational opportunity at a challenging level without putting undue stress on the child. Was your son already tested at his previous school?
I suggest asking your son what he likes about the regular classroom, and what would need to change for him to succeed there. Try to make this a team effort, your son + teachers + school special Ed people, because kids really do expect the adults to figure things out without hostility. Staying calm is important, but if the school isn’t taking the lead you need to figure it out with your son and perhaps his doctor. Hang on! and keep us posted.

Forgot to ask you: does the current school has all the documentation from the previous school?

Here is pretty much the same as in the U.S. At the school in T-R (Trois-Rivières, Québec), my son had an IEP, it was done twice a year. The Ministry of education recognizes he has ADHD. On a daily basis, he could have extra time for a test, do the test in a different room, he had his own laptop, access to a scribe, help from a special educator, he also was exempted from most classes to be able to concentrate on the main subjects (French, English, math and phys ed.). He was evaluated by a Pedopsychiatrist, a Pedeatrician, a Psychologists... I brought everything I had. Papers from the previous school, with the teacher's names and phone numbers because they really wanted my son to succeed and they loved him and wanted to help, I had Drs papers, every evaluations done by every professional... everything!

We moved to Repentigny (still in Québec) last October and to this day, the new school says they don't want to use the IEP we brought from the other school, because they don't do it the same and they want to re evaluate him. So they simply dropped him in a class, and get him to do a regular curriculum, no help, no adaptation to his needs, nothing. Needless to say my son felt let down...

Here, the kids all go in the same class and than the IEP does the rest. They work with their peers, at their own pace. My son likes his class, he wishes he could keep up with his peers. He really tries too and then he gets overwhelmed and goes downhill. Panic and anxiety sets in... he brings home amount of work he can not do, we end up working lots of extra hours at home on top of the day in school.

Today he had a meeting with a new Dr. It went very well. He has his referral for psychiatrist and psychologist. We really hope they will rattle the school's cage!! Cause he really needs the help of an educator with him... I am going to make a proposition to the school. Since my son would be able to work out of the library if he needs to ( Every teacher seen he is having a hard time and some of them are willing to help), I would like to go help him, on a volunteer basis, until they reevaluate his needs. Cross fingers for me!!!

by the way... thanks for your comments!!! :P I don't feel so alone now :)

Glad to be able to support you! If your child is evaluated, you might ask the doctor to suggest he qualifies for Special Education Services so he can get an IEP. Or, if his has documentation from his previous school, he can validate it

It sounds like you have good communication with your son, and he’s eager for an opportunity to do well. It should be possible for his school to give him what he needs. It was nice to read about his previous school and those caring teachers :slight_smile:

We have an IEP, but I will ask the new Dr to see if we have a Special Education Service. I have the feeling this new Dr is on that path. I think that is the reason why he sent us to the psychologist. He will be re evaluated asap to see his exact needs. It would make sense, wouldn't it? O_o

John and I have great communication. He tells me everything. I chronic depressive and social anxiety and miss diagnosed when I was a child. I don't want my son to go through the same struggles and suffer... I always wanted him to understand he was not alone, he was not crazy and I was totaly there for him no matter what he could count on my support. I suffered as a kid and I do not want my son to feel the same. I have a great family, but back than, all those disorders were miss understood... they told my Mom I was shy! lol No big deal, it made me the person I am now... sensitive to my son's feelings :) I love him to death! :)

My understanding is that an IEP is always used for SPecial Education because it must contain measurable goals and objectives. For example, an IEP for a child with a modified spelling list might have as a goal to increase correctly spelled words to 8 from a list of 10, 80% of the time. The objective is to practice words (in the way he learns best specified) for 10 minutes daily with an aide (you can practice at home of course). When your child meets that goal consistently, increase the challenge on the IEP. Being measurable is key, making the IEP easier to enforce if it’s not being followed by educators, but also for you and your son to see what kind of modifications or assistance to ask for, exactly what to strive for, and to judge how much time studying at home is practical for your son, with or without your assistance. It’s possible your son will understand how measurement is used as a tool in all kinds of situations, and make decisions for himself about how best to use his time and energy. It is not to measure against his peers in any restrictive or negative way. Special education and IEP’s go together. If a 504 is added that’s fine, but it’s different.

What is a 504 exactly?

Queenbee, see the discussion "Accommodations in School" where I talk about Section 504. IEP's are under the ADA, too, under IDEA: Individuals with Disabilities Education Act. In the States, children of all abilities have the right to "a Free and Appropriate Public Education, or FAPE. I lent out my IEP's so I'm not sure, but I think there's a page to list Accommodations under Section 504. It applies to the general education environment, is something your child may require that's different from other students but doesn't require special education by the general education teacher or aide. Like a seat in the front row near the teacher. Look at the discussion I mentioned and read some of the accommodations parents and students have found to be helpful.

Thank you very much! Will do :P