Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder
The number of children with ADHD in school has significantly increased in recent years. Many children experience difficulties in paying attention, concentrating on their schoolwork, or remaining physically still as a normal part of growing up. However, depending on how often these problems occur and how different they are from what is expected, ADHD may be considered. School staff, parents, and physicians can work together to make sure that children with attention-based learning challenges continue to make progress in school.
Children diagnosed with ADHD may need specialized educational plans (either an IEP through special education or a 504 Plan) to help them learn more effectively, or may improve with only slightly different methods from those used with their classmates. Many effective interventions for children with attention challenges can be implemented by regular education staff in the classroom, especially with the involvement of supportive parents. One key to success is clear and consistent communication among all parties: parents or guardians, caregivers, physicians, teachers, aides, and administrators. Teachers who believe a child has difficulty paying attention or concentrating should discuss the issue with the child's parents and appropriate pupil services staff. Pupil service staff, teachers, parents and medical professionals should work together to determine if an ADHD diagnosis is appropriate and the best way to support the child for successful learning.
The article below is located in the Resource Library on the website of the National Association of School Psychologists (NASP) and can provide helpful information for teachers, parents, pupil services staff, or others working with children having these difficulties. Information about special education programs can be found at Other Health Impairments, a web page of the Special Education Team at the Department of Public Instruction.