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Public Schooling and Helping Children with Disabilities.

kanzler1987 profile image
15 Replies

I am going on a rant. So far my week was good. Monday my partner and I managed to get our 9 year old daughter on the bus and it was such a successful day. And she made it through the day. I then find out unless my daughter is causing issues at school they will not give her an O.T. (which I think it dumb) but then I let it go. So I got one of the forms back from her primary teacher and her teacher says she cries uncontrollably, and has a lot of sadness at school. But with these emotions an O.T. can not be given to my daughter. I am so frustrated. I want my daughter to succeed and I feel like public schools see her as a challenge and instead of helping they just say let her go through. Please just help her. That is your job. If I lack off as much as the public school do I wouldn’t have a job. This is so frustrating. Rant over.

P.S. rant when trying to leave your daughters primary doctors a message it should be much easier than they make it.

End of Rant.

15 Replies
kanzler1987 profile image
kanzler1987

what I mean by forms are her ADHD forms that we are trying to test her for.

Kkoelle profile image
Kkoelle

I feel your pain. My 9 year old is giving me an ulcer. Every day he goes to school, I obsessively check my emails for the inevitable one that comes from his teacher and/or school counselor, behavior specialists, vice principal, etc saying how he lost his temper, was banging chairs, slamming lockers, saying everyone hates him and he shouldn’t be alive. Monday I was called by the school to pick him up because he was being disruptive and attempting to elope. He is on meds, in counseling, has an IEP in place, but no services in school. They just complain about his behavior every day, but I feel like they need to do more in school to help him. I am so stressed. I asked my husband if I can let my son play hooky tomorrow and stay home because I can’t take it…but he said no lol. I feel so bad for our kids because they struggle so much with their emotions. Everything sets off my son now and I wish I could fix it for him, but I can’t and it’s heartbreaking. I am sorry your daughter is struggling. I am also sorry that the public schools aren’t better equipped to handle our neurodivergent kids.

Pattimum profile image
Pattimum in reply to Kkoelle

Maybe there is a reason why your son is struggling like this. Badly adjusted medication? Or bullying?

As I wrote below- there is often a reason like with my son it was ‘bullying’ but also do look into your son’s medication. For my son all the bullying and him being an imbalanced mess started when we had him started on stimulant ADHD medication. Aggression, irritability, change of character, negativity… All were worse than before meds. And I think because he was then so unwell and easily ‘triggered’ then the bullying started. Since we had him changed to non stimulant Atomoxetine he is balanced, he started yelling in detail what was happening at school and he stopped being so ‘reactive’. His mood is lifted so he can deal better with peers, he manages to carry on playing with kids who previously were bullying him. Without Atomoxetine it wouldn’t be possible, he has had such a grudge…

Kkoelle profile image
Kkoelle in reply to Pattimum

thanks for your response…it is so hard to know. His doctor just added Prozac to help regulate his mood. We stopped the guanfacine because he started getting more doom and gloom with it. His doc will continue his Focalin for now. His teachers do not seem to think he is being bullied. But my son perceives everyone as a bully. For example if I ask him to brush his teeth, he calls me a bully. He is also going to start DBT, which I had to google. It’s a specific type of therapy to help with that negative self talk and will teach better coping strategies. I am glad your med change worked for your son!

Pattimum profile image
Pattimum in reply to Kkoelle

That’s great that your son can have DBT👍I wish there were therapies available in the UK to children. I added my son to a waiting list for Esteem Project which is a peer group meeting weekly to talk and there is an adult group facilitator. I feel that for a kid with ADHD that’s something that really could help- meeting with peers outside of his school group, talking to different children, some older etc. I just hope that the waiting list isn’t too long, he needs it now and not in a years time…

Pattimum profile image
Pattimum in reply to Kkoelle

Yes kids do use term ‘bullying’ and then it almost lost meaning. I was using with my son term ‘unkind behaviours’. So let’s say if a girl kicked his shoe when he was changing for football and then she picked it up and threw it to the locked area so my son would miss half of the training session retrieving this shoe- girl’s mum called it ‘oh, I don’t think this is bullying, it’s just a prank, I will tell her that your son didn’t t like it’. But mind you- somehow he was the object of those so called ‘pranks’ pretty much daily with the various kids doing those ‘pranks’. So basically you need to be a detective and actually be firm with the teachers and tell them- well, no, it’s not just a ‘prank’ it’s bullying.

Pattimum profile image
Pattimum

Once you get those forms through and get her tested and get her specialist care either psychiatrist or paediatrician care, you should start seeing the light at the end of the tunnel. If she is so tearful maybe she has depression? People with ADHD often have also anxiety disorder, depression etc.

Have you tried to investigate why she is so sad at school? There is normally a reason. I mean, it could be just depression or maybe that she hates when she makes a mistake (and then crying) but with kids there is often a reason. She is asking for help, but doesn’t say exactly what help she needs.

My son was bullied at school and he wasn’t telling me, he told me ‘Mummy I hoped if I didn’t tell the teacher they would start liking me.’ But at home he was acting out and being a ‘little s…’ to me. That’s how he was asking for help. Then eventually he started telling me more what was going on. I am slowly sorting it out for him, trying to move him to a different school for a fresh start… Bullying was going on for over a year so it’s too much to ‘fix it and forget’, exactly how you said- the school is not doing a good job, in this case they cover up and say ‘we don’t have any bullying’.

kanzler1987 profile image
kanzler1987 in reply to Pattimum

my daughter I think feels the academic peer pressure from her other peers which is probably giving her more of the anxiety and depression, I do try to talk to her but she gets super uncomfortable with me talking to me, I also want to get her a counselor but she is telling me that would be embarrassing (even though I go see a counselor) so I am just trying to do things on her terms and have her come up with these ideas. So she know she can feel comfortable with me. But yes I agree with everything else you say in this comment. But thank you so much for the amazing support.

Pattimum profile image
Pattimum in reply to kanzler1987

Yes it’s hard with the kids when they seem not to accept the help offered, in your case the councelor. I hope that you will find ways to help her.

Do you have any prospects and choice of private schools where you live? I’d say that’s what I’d want for my son now. Before he was diagnosed and before we found medication that works for him I would have never thought about the private school for him. Now he’s been medicated and stable and with well controlled ADHD symptoms since he started Atomoxetine and I am realising that he’d do well in a small class with a good ratio of teachers to pupils in a private school. The trouble is we have all the reports and all from before we found the right medication and before he was diagnosed and I almost need to build his CV now 😄With all the previous reports from Educational Psychologist - no chance I can get him to a private school. For me the most terrible finding was that his school has no knowledge about ADHD whatsoever and they have no interest in getting better at screening for ADHD. So for years I think he has been just ‘signed off’ as not so bright and when I was reporting misbehaving and refusal to do homework at home, I was being told that ‘I expect too much of him’ and ‘why would I need to do maths at home with him, school is doing it’- so basically in between the lines I was being told that I was the problem, making poor simple boy doing work at home to catch up with the school program. Then he was assessed by OT and she showed in tests that he’s actually bright! And now his ADHD symptoms are managed with medication, and I hope that he will really start catching up with the school work.

kanzler1987 profile image
kanzler1987 in reply to Pattimum

my partner and I can’t afford a private school. But I agree with the smaller class rooms to kids to teacher. And she does have a IEP teacher with only 3 kids in the class but she still get distracted by the other kids in the class. And as for you have troubles with your son and homework at home I go through the same thing with my daughter. Her homework is to read for 20 minutes for 4 days a week. And she just refuses to read. I do a lot of the reading to her but she can read just fine. I think it is just so frustrating to her because of some of the words and yeah. When she has good day she will sound the words out which is awesome when she does that. I know my daughter is super smart, but it is a struggle for her. And I wish there was some kind of way to help her and have fun at the same time with it. And the grade she is in they want her to read chapter books which that is hard for kids with learning curves. So. But like you said as soon as we get this paper work all done, I will see a light at the end of a tunnel and when it clicks for her she will love school. But I just want you to know that you are doing your best for your son. Just as I am with my daughter.

Pattimum profile image
Pattimum in reply to kanzler1987

Just don’t give up on her. 20 minutes for a kid with ADHD who is only 9 is a lot. My son hates maths and specialist ADHD nurse write recommendations that he does 5 minutes per day maths any home and he still has fits when I ask him for the 5 minutes. However for some strange reason with a tutor who comes once a week to do maths with him- he does full 45 minutes for her. It’s something about years of bad relationship between me and him- the minute I ask him to do maths he starts refusing and it triggers old habit bad behaviour for him. But for the tutor he works hard.

Maybe start slow with the target 5 minutes and increasing week by week. Maybe it will work for her?

NYCmom2 profile image
NYCmom2 in reply to kanzler1987

Regarding reading, we have a lot of success with reading once we got our son the graphic novel version of popular books. The illustrations are so exciting he gets pulled into the story then he’s willing to pick up the text only version of the same series.

Author Rick Riordan has the Percy Jackson, Heroes of Olympus, Magnus Chase books in graphic novel and text only forms

Author Stuart Gibs has Spy School and the first two books are also in graphic novel format

Harry Potter books now come in an illustrated version

He likes silly and potty humor so we let him indulge it in the name of reading more. We found that any reading leads to more reading.

Dav Pilky author of Captain Underpants and Dog Man and is a good example

Magazines like National Geographic Kids is varied and interesting and it counts for the 20 minutes of reading.

Our son does a lot of his reading around bedtime or on weekends. I keep track of it and write it down on his reading homework list on Mondays. It makes the weekday afternoons a little easier.

Aspenanddusty profile image
Aspenanddusty

I am so sorry you are going thru this. I have had a similar experience with my then 7 year old son. He was diagnosed with adhd with depression and anxiety. Your daughter's behavior sounds much like my sons. He cried often and got very little help with his classwork from his teacher, special ed teacher or the school counselor. He felt they moved too fast and he didn't understand the work. After two years of this, I pulled him out of public school. He has PTSD from his past experience at school and while this has put a heavy burden on me, it is best for him. Your child may also benefit from a child therapist. Ours has helped immensely.

kanzler1987 profile image
kanzler1987

working on getting her one, but she is a little leery of the idea, so trying to take it very slow with her with that. I think she also feels people move to fast for her as well, because she has gotten on me for going fast, as when you set a routine you know your time limits and stuff and I feel kinda of the same way with her with the school and it is so frustrating, that they can’t see that and they just keep letting her go through grade to grade even though I feel she hasn’t learned anything and just struggles.

kyeager profile image
kyeager

I have a 11 y.o son who had multiple issues at school with ADHD. This is a public school in Illinois. The district school psychtrist basically flat out said we do not have the resources for your child to help him one on one daily. The see him as a challenge and rather have him out or fall in the cracks. After hearing this I knew and felt this school was not for him. I didn't want to send him to an alternative school. I found a home school co op in my area and he loves it. The one on one attention is given to him and he doesn't take any medication to concentrate. I believe these public schools and some teachers don't want to put in the extra work for those who need a little more attention.

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