Teaching Students with LD and ADHD


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Joined: Mar 18, 2008
Posts: 3
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Posted Mar 19, 2008 at 12:18:10 PM
Subject: ADHD

Hello everyone! I am a High School Special Education teacher and taking a course on ADHD to renew my certification. I wanted to take this courese because I have several ADHD students and I felt that I needed updated information on the topic.
I have been discussing the fact that I am going back to school with my students and sharing general information about the course with them. I told them that I took a survey to see if I could possibly have ADHD or ADD. One of my students showed an interest and asked if she could take the test. I gave her the website and she took it during lunch. She told me that the survey stated that she had strong tendencies that matched criteria for ADHD (she does exhibit this in class as well). Now, her mother is irrate with me that I allowed her to take this test (the student is 18). I have explained to the parent that I would never tell a student that they have ADHD or mislead her daughter in any way. In fact, I told her that if she did have it, she was a graduating senior and obviously managed it very well. The parent is still very upset.

Any suggestions? Do you think I did anything wrong?

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Joined Jul 11, 2005
Posts: 550

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Posted:Mar 19, 2008 2:13:06 PM

No, you didn't do anything wrong. The student is old enough to choose her own path. It could just be that the parent has issues with "labels" and that is something they have to deal with. If this student were interested she could have found tons of information on her own.

Also, at 18, unless there is mental impairment to prevent it, she is legally allowed to request testing herself, have a say in her IEP, make her own health decisions, etc.

scifinut mom to: ms 16, bp/adhd/anxiety/complex ld mr. 20, add/dyslexic I hear and I forget I see and I remember I do and I understand. -Anonymous

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Joined Feb 06, 2005
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Posted:Mar 20, 2008 3:26:54 AM
Subject:Re: ADHD

Hi KristenBell,
You raise a rather complex question?

I appreciate that it was just an informal test, that would just indicate a possibility?
Though part of the problem, is your position of authority, as Special Educ Teacher.
If it was just a friend of hers, or someone with no authority that directed her to the test?
Then it would more clearly be seen as 'just some test on the internet?'
But when the Special Ed Teacher recommends the test.

Then it could be seen as a preliminary evaluation, indicating a need for further assessment?
So how does the Mother respond to hearing this from her daughter?
Does this mean that she should now take her in for a formal evaluation?
You also mentioned that 'if she did have it, then she is managing well.'
Where their is a bit of stigma associated with ADHD & ADD.
As once it has been confirmed by an evaluation.
Then, whenever one has to fill in a form, for a Govt Dept, or a job application, or medical insurance or superannuation?
When it comes the tick box: 'Do you have a Disability?' 'If so, give details:...'
Where my basic point, is that their are many implications?

But on the other hand, if one does in fact have ADD or any other LD?
Then it is most often a great relief to have an explanation!
Yet it is not uncommon for Parents to refuse having their Child evaluated for an LD ?
As they do not want to be 'one of those Parents', that 'have a Child with a Disability'!

Where it is generally a rather traumatic experience, when one gets an official diagnosis?
But equally, a great relief!

So, as to your question about whether you did anything wrong?
You could equally be asking the opposite question?
Where you could have been writing, that when she asked you if she could take the test?
That you said No.
Were you then wrong, to refuse her?

Where I could equally argue that you should have allowed her to take the test!

So whatever you did, you would be both right and wrong at the same time?
But, I'm inclined to support the position of the Girl.
Afterall, it's 'her life'.
Yet, I might mention that I also run a Forum the maths disorder Dyscalculia.
Where I often get 13 and 14 year olds, who suspect that they may have Dyscalculia, and want to get tested for it?
But their Parents refuse to allow them to be tested!

So as I said at the beginning, it is a complex question, where the answer is?
When people do a formal assessment for an LD, and then get an official confirmation.
Often the experience is paralleled with the grief associated with a 'death in the family'?

Who was this person, that for all of my life, I understood as 'me'?
Where it now turns out, that I never really understood 'me'?
So I wasn't 'stupid or lazy', I just have a learning difficulty/ difference!
So if I'm not this 'stupid, lazy' person, that other people had made me believe to be the person, that I think of me?
My identity!
Then, who am I?

Does this mean, that I now have to, 'tick the box'; Disabled, when completing a form?

But then, not many years ago?
Being 'left handed' was classed as a Disability.
Yet now it is accepted as just Different, but Normal.

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Joined Mar 21, 2008
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Posted:Mar 21, 2008 1:22:29 PM
Subject:Re: ADHD

Kristen Bell,

I too am taking a class on ADHD to better understand the some of the students in my class who have been diagnosed with this. I wanted to comment on your post. I do not think you were wrong in allowing the student to take the test. She is 18, a legal adult. However, being a teacher myself, I understand how parents react to things sometimes. We just have to be careful. I think you did the right thing. --Kayla

Kayla O'Quinn

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Joined Mar 25, 2008
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Posted:Mar 25, 2008 5:21:27 PM
Subject:Re: ADHD

Hello. I am also taking a class for recertification on ADHD, and wanted to comment on your post. I'm not sure of any official legalities or policies on the issue or anything, however I think it's clear you obviously didn't have any negative intentions and were just trying to help. The student asked about the test and you told them where they could take it. They made the choice from there and you weren't trying to persuade them. Knowing how some parents can react it may not have been the best choice, but I can certainly understand how a person would make the choice you did at the time. Hindsight is always 20/20. Perhaps this will help you and all of us to better know how to handle similar situations in the future. Thanks for your post and I hope everything works out ok.

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Joined Mar 18, 2008
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Posted:Apr 02, 2008 8:27:18 AM
Subject:Re: ADHD

Hey everyone! Just wanted to update! Everything worked out well. After a nice Spring Break the parent wrote me a note and said it was not big deal. I explained my position and also reiterated that her child is doing very well academically.

I am learning a great deal in my class and feel good about applying my knowledge in the classroom.

Thanks for the replies!

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