My 13 year old son, in private school, was diagnosed with ADD & ADHD. He is failing all subjects and the teachers claim he has difficulty concentrating and organizing.
We requested special ed services from the district. His test scores actually were pretty good so the head of the special ed department was not helpful. She said there are so many cases that were worse. There were others that ‘needed the services of the department more’ than my son.
The district has him travel to a resource room program where a district aide meets him at an appointed time daily to assist him to organize his homework, studies, etc. He is still failing every subject.
Children do not fail unless there is a reason for it.
You know him. Does it make sense to you that distractibility and organization are the only problems?
Is the trip to a separate school every day to have someone help him organize going to make any difference in his skills or knowledge?
It doesn’t sound like it.
Review the Evaluation
Read this article: Tests and Measurements
Look at your son’s evaluations again.
Make sure the evaluations say what you think they say.
- Was the evaluation complete?
- Do you have the percentile scores?
- Were there tests of reading, written expression, IQ, phonological awareness?
- Do you have the IQ subtest scores?
- Is there scatter between the subtest scores on the IQ test?
If you don’t understand these questions, you may want to get this training CD – it will walk you through the process of Understanding Your Child’s Test Scores.
Was the evaluation done by a private sector evaluator?
Make sure the evaluation has recommendations and that the recommendations have been followed. The evaluator or educational diagnostician should be able to determine exactly what your son needs and can advise the school about this. If you rely on evaluations by school personnel, they are likely to support the school’s position.
If the evaluation talks about problems with executive function you should read this book. The checklists alone are worth the price of the book. Executive Skills in Children and Adolescents
Questions about Private School Placement
- What is going on at the private school?
- Why is he unable to learn there?
- Why is he there if they cannot teach him?
My guess is that there is more going on than ADHD. Plenty of children with ADHD do not fail all their classes. Plenty of disorganized children do not fail all their classes.
It’s possible that your child has a learning disability, in addition to ADHD, or that the ADHD has a severe negative impact on his ability to learn in school.
I cannot imagine any degree of ADHD or disorganization that would explain the academic failure. Perhaps you have not told me everything, or you do not know everything yourself.
You still have more questions to investigate. Start now to do your research.