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ADHD Parents Together
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School frustrations

Hello my fellow ADHD parents! :)

So I need to vent. My son is in 2nd grade and this is his 4th school already due to moving and finally placing him in a behavioral therapy school after many failed attempts at any regular school Working out for him. Years of IEPS, numerous para’s. Lots of suspensions. Now I feel like he is in this school and he’s not learning anything. They play all day long. The teacher rewards them all day with sweet treats. They don’t even do math or get homework! I don’t know what to do!!! He can’t be in a regular gen ed class it seems but where he is at now I feel like he isn’t going to learn anything , fall behind and pick up behaviors from other kids that are worse than him. Sigh. I’m So tired. I just don’t know what to dooooo!!!

11 Replies


That for discussing this with the group. First off all of these decisions you are making now, when he grows up he won't remember so please dont be at yourself up about it.

The goal is to get him to learn in some environment. I assume you have an IEP? There has to be a 30 initial when you enter the school and there should be goals addressing where he is academically, correct? The school has the obligation to meet that. So if they are not, hold a meeting and make sure a supervisor is there and address this. There has to be someone with an academic background or they bring someone in to help you.

I would start there.

Good luck!


Get yourself a Special Ed lawyer. He will make the school comply or he will sue.


What's the saying "you can catch more more flies with honey, than vinigar" ?

I would start with an IEP..

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I tried talking to the school but they didnt want to do an Eval to start an IEP. Once my lawyer got involved they complied. I agree that its better to talk but you also gotta show them youre not alone and you know your federal laws and your childs rights.


Oh, my lawyer also taught me to keep a paper trail of your converstaions with the school and audio record parent/teacher meetings. School says dumb stuff to trick you so they dont meet their requirements. Recordings can help you in court to avoid he said/she saids.


I am a Sp. ED Specialist. I sit in 30 IEP's a year and I work in ALL different educational environments. The most important thing a family can do is work collaboratively with the Specialist that do the work.

The time we had lawyers following us, changed the dynamic on everything. To have parents by my side working is the best Ave. To take.

Yes I agree there is a time and place to show you have teeth, but you just arrived there.

Best of luck.

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My son was admitted to a behavioral hospital, diagnosed with adhd, is on medication, and is doing CBT. My son has school related anxiety and has been aggressive towards children and staff numerous times. Despite all of the above, school declined to proceed with a Functional Behavioral Analysis citing he was very smart. Yes, my son is smart but his behaviors obviously show there may be an emotional disturbance. My attorney called the school attorney and they finally agreed to the Eval. Ive done all my part to help my son succeed but its really hard when school is uncooperative. Winging and gauging how to work with ADHD children is not a true education and its a diservice to these beautiful kiddos that are tomorrows future. Best of luck friends and lots of postive vibes!! 😘


I am sorry that any educational syatem has made you feel this way and you have had such negative experiences. You started this thread asking "what you can do". My answer would be work collaboratively with the person providing the service for your child and doing the assessment, they are the direct contact with your child and want to help him. Try to establish a relationship with them.

Best of luck


He may need time. Rewards can be good. Look into the Pax Good Behavior Game and attempt to get your school interested in it. Pax rewards good behavior with short physical activities. Pax has been clinically tested and shown to improve ADHD behaviors. Google Pax GBG. A few references:

NIDA Notes. “Good Behavior Game Wins 2012 Mentor International Best Practice Award.” November 2012. National Institute on Drug Abuse.


Bates, Mary. “Calm Down Boys, Adolescent Girls have ADHD, too.” Psychology Today, June 2012.


SAMHSA National Registry of Evidence-based programs and Practices (NREPP) Good Behavior Game.


SAMHSA National Registry of Evidence-based programs and Practices (NREPP) Pax Good Behavior Game.


David-Ferdon C, Simon TR. Preventing Youth Violence: Opportunities for Action. Atlanta, GA: National Center for Injury Prevention and Control, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 2014. p. 27


Washington State Institute for Public Policy


If you really want to change the world or do good for kids, do something about Pax in your local school. Ask me how.

Richard Seitz, rseitz@co.ocean.nj.us




Sounds like you need to write to the school district, office of special education and demand a new hearing within thirty days. He needs to be in school where he can LEARN. He is being passed through for the school district's convenience, for which you contribute taxes to their salaries. Possibly some books and/or a psychologist specializing in children and special needs issues can advise about behavior modification and what he needs in school. I have a 31 year old son who still has ADHD issues. Because of everything we have been through, I self-published a book on amazon.com under books that I wrote and illustrated myself called "I have A.D.D. and I'm Proud to be Me." If you read this book to your child, it will open the door to communication so you can learn more about what HE feels, wants and needs. It will help him to trust his parents more and tell you what is going on from HIS perspective. He needs to learn what he is GOOD AT and WHAT HE DOES WELL and WHAT HE TALENTS ARE, so he can learn to value himself as a human being and learn to accept his condition and work around it, to develop into the self-accepting and self-liking young man he will grow into. My son is now a teaching assistant for children with special needs and he loves it. He found his station in life. Sometimes the answers are in front of us - -in the heart of our child. I hope my book helps, but in either case, I wish you and your family well in your search. Wendy Kirkpatrick

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This may be late but it sounds like you may have placed your son in a program outside the school. It seems the comments got a little off base and not sure they focused on your particular questions. I have spent the last 25 years working with families and school districts in developing programs that meet schools needs. My experience has been that 99% of school staff are caring and supportive folks that are doing their best and often things fall apart when either families or schools decide the other is not in it for the right reasons. There is no reason that with the right level of support from you and the school that your son can't be successful. I have found that a mixture of time in special education and general education throughout each day is often beneficial as it meets all the student's needs. Often times there is no easy answer, but the answers are there! Sorry you are struggling!


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