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Jane:  Forcing child with huge amount of anxiety (age 12) to get to school isn’t working – now having to go to court, which is increasing anxiety. (Recent Dx of Autism Spectrum Disorder). Suggestions? Is it reasonable to request reduced school hours/some cyber classes temporarily until we can get school testing done? Extremely intelligent child who does not wan to fall behind. Thanks for your advice/experience!

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01/08/2016 5:46 pm

It might help to get a supportive note from child’s doctor. Also, ask if there is a special program for students going through a difficult time in your district. My district has a six-week program, where a social worker plays a supportive role and the basic academic assignments are sent over from the home school. Perhaps it would also be helpful to take a little break from school, via the homeschooling option.

As the parent, you can also reassure the child about the fear of falling behind. (I doubt the objective danger is anywhere near as substantial as the child’s assessment of the situation. There is an awful lot of busy work in middle school.)

01/08/2016 5:46 pm

That is certainly reasonable to ask. However, it may not be appropriate, & the school or state may say that it is not allowable. The request to the court & school should be that a plan needs to be developed to address his anxiety, while the testing is being done & after it is done.