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ADHD Parents Together
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ADHD Children and Public Schools

Our daughter has ADHD and has requested to continue her education on-line instead of going to a public school. She feels like unliked by other students and that they always make fun of her. They gang up on her try to convince others not to talk to her. She stays in her room and Cries. She has been bullied in the past and the school system was reluctant to get involved. Any suggestions?

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Hi,

In general, my advice (as a former school counselor and now as a parent coach) is to let her take just one class online and see how she does. Online school can work great for some kids, but can be a disaster for others-- it depends on their level of attention, focus,time management skills and initiative (and whether there are learning disabilities that need to be accommodated--many kids find online courses to be much more rigorous than in school classes).

Also, I don't think it's a good idea to pull her from school as a way of running away instead of dealing with and learning to cope with difficult social situations like feeling like kids aren't liking her. Counseling would be a good idea, or you could see if the school counselor runs any groups for friendship, social skills, etc. It's normal for a teen to want to stop going to school for these reasons, but it's better to help her learn the skills and learn how to cope and be resilient.

Hope this helps.

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Thank you. We have used counseling in Elementary school and it worked for a short period of time, but when Middle school started the children are in small groups and seem intent on singling out children they feel can't defend themselves. Some of the language they use and whats posted on social media is appalling and in certain cases frightening. I thank you for your response.

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Our school has some problems with bullying. Is she on an IEP? If so, she is in a protected class and you might want to file a report to the state on the bullying. If you do, then the school must investigate and take action. Alternatively, is there a private school that has a "no bullying" policy? Our son was enrolled in a non-public school with a no-bullying policy after we filed for Due Process against the district because my son wasn't meeting his IEP goals. The advantage of the private school is they can kick kids out for bullying. It's very effective. Our son is vastly happier at this new private school and feels he's found his "peeps."

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Thank you. She is on IEP but I wasn't aware of the reporting on bullying. Thank you for the information.

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Thanks for the advice

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My husband and I have had issues with the school system with dealing with the way a teacher treated our daughter. I can tell you that the only way the school system will do anything is if you complain to your state school board. Also if your daughter feels like that just tell her that she is special and everyone has something about them that makes them special. I also went to our states govener and sent him a email and got help from his office. I wish you and your daughter good luck. I have ADD and I felt the same way as your daughter in school. I did private school.

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Thank you

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We had similar issues. Our daughter did 5th grade online and 6th grade half online/half on campus and now is in 7th grade full time. The online year was a very good and healing year for her. We did have to hire a tutor to do the online school with her since she and I (mom) butted heads over schoolwork. But we have several friends and family who have done online school and it can be a real lifesaver.

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So sorry to hear your daughter's struggles. Yes, my son too was struggling in school, bullied not just by students but by the teachers and counselor, too! It was horrible and it seemed the school only cared that he be at school to get their funds! As far as my child's academic success, it seemed as if it didnt matter.

I brought my son home to homeschool after 2-yrs of seeing any progress and held back a school year. I then pulled out my son who although was having difficulties at school, he was afraid to make the change because he still wanted to be at school. After making the change to homeschool, it was a little difficult for me as the parent/teacher, but just like anything.... i couldn't give up!! Today, my son has gone from failing to 3.0+ GPA! Having an IEP and getting the needed support has been nothing but wonderful for us. My son's selfesteem has him confident to want to continue onto college.

Well... i dont know if i shared enough to support with your child but i only wish you and your child well. The most important key is to be proactive with the teachers and admin as much as possible to be on top of all that needs to be implemented for your child's educational growth. Blessings!!

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Amazing!!! Great stuff. Never give up ! Read Driven to Distraction

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I have been dealing with the same exact issue but mine escalated when my daughter finally had enough and pushed one of the kids. She got a warning that if she does it again she would be suspended.

We thought about online education but were advised by her psychiatrist and psychologist that it was not a good idea since she is already isolated at school she’s lacking social skills and if we pull her from public school she will be completely isolated which isn’t good for children because they need to have some type of problem solving skills as well as social skills.

Unfortunately we can’t always keep them away from bullies.

I would suggest you speak to the principal regarding the issue. Speak to the teacher and even the playground teachers to ensure they keep an eye on your kid. I have had to do this and it helps because they will easily call my daughter away from the children who bully her.

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