26 answers

Should Teachers Be Allowed to Diagnose ADHD And/or Suggest Medication?

Should teachers be allowed to diagnose ADHD and/or suggest medication?

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Don't believe they can diagnose and they cannot prescribe meds. What they can do is suggest testing and report what they're seeing in their classroom. Only doctors can diagnose ADHD.

4 moms found this helpful

I think a teacher can say "i'm seeing all the signs" and recommend the parent to the proper channels for observation -- school counselor or psychologist, special services, etc. And the teacher can say "bear in mind that many children with these behaviors benefit well from XY medication but should it come to that a doctor will give you all the options." Anything beyond that would be overstepping bounds in my opinion.

4 moms found this helpful

On the off-hand chance that this isn't part of a thesis or some other thing that you are doing, NO, teachers shouldn't be in the business of diagnosing children. They don't have medical credentials.

D.

2 moms found this helpful

More Answers

NO.
But they are allowed to recommend that you have your child professionally evaluated.
As a parent, I would take that type of an observation from a teacher seriously.

8 moms found this helpful

is this a real question?
of course teachers shouldn't and i don't believe they do. they can suggest, based on their experience with kids in the classroom, that it's something that should be checked out.
that is NOT diagnosing.
khairete
S.

7 moms found this helpful

Teachers are not, by law, allowed to diagnose ADHD or suggest medication because they are not, by trade, doctors and can't evaluate for ADHD.

However, they can SUGGEST that your child be evaluated for ADHD and that they've seen treatments for ADHD that include medication work.

That's my short answer.

My longer answer:

Teachers can be invaluable in helping identify if a child has ADHD. Let me clarify. EXPERIENCED teachers. Now, a school can perform an evaluation at your written request during which you would fill out a questionnaire answering very specific questions. The teachers would do the same. The child would be observed in the classroom and the school psychologist would perform some testing as well. Those responses to all of those written responses would then be evaluated and the result would "subject likely has _____" or would state something else if evaluated for something else. If the child is typical, the evaluation would indicate such.

The purpose of such an evaluation from the school would be to help target the child's strengths and weaknesses and help establish a behavior plan for the child either in an IEP or 504 plan.

In addition to the school performing an IEP, it would be an excellent idea to get an independent evaluation from one or more of the following specialists: Developmental-Behavioral Pediatrician; Pediatric Psychiatrist; Pediatric Neurologist. Any and all should indicate whether or not they specialize in behavioral disorders and neurological disorders that include ADHD, ADD, and others. They should all be competent in follow-up continuous care if it's needed. If there IS a diagnosis, it would be good to have it to bring to the school. If they feel your child DOES NOT have ADHD or ADD, then it would be good to have that in writing for the school as well.

6 moms found this helpful

This is your third question on this website...and all three have been about ADHD medication. I'm curious as to why you're so curious about this disorder.

Teachers can't diagnose anything. They're not doctors. They do, however, spend a lot of time with children and can tell the parents, from their experience, that they feel the child might have ADHD and should be taken in to be evaluated. Teachers also can't prescribe medications. They can make whatever suggestions they want though, or again, from their experience, tell the parents that the medication needs to be adjusted.

5 moms found this helpful

Teachers observe and suggest. They do not diagnose.

4 moms found this helpful

I think a teacher can say "i'm seeing all the signs" and recommend the parent to the proper channels for observation -- school counselor or psychologist, special services, etc. And the teacher can say "bear in mind that many children with these behaviors benefit well from XY medication but should it come to that a doctor will give you all the options." Anything beyond that would be overstepping bounds in my opinion.

4 moms found this helpful

Don't believe they can diagnose and they cannot prescribe meds. What they can do is suggest testing and report what they're seeing in their classroom. Only doctors can diagnose ADHD.

4 moms found this helpful

God, no.

There are about 25 differentials for ADHD ... Aka things that may LOOK like ADHD, but are in fact, a completely different medical, neurological, or environmental issue.

That's why REAL ADHD testing takes so long (medical appt, lab work, home/life study, and then FINALLY a psych differential).

There are over EIGHTY ADHD meds on the market. PEDs should NEVER be Rx'ing ADHD meds (barring a few pediatric specialists: developmental peds, pediatric neurologists, pediatric psychiatrists)... Because they CANNOT keep up with over 1000 psychiatric meds for common disorders (ADHD, anxiety, bipolar, depression, PTSD, etc... A short list of 15 common neuro issues each with 50-100 meds available), MUCH LESS all the peer review journals, ongoing and completed studies, off label usages, etc. That's WHY there are specialists!!! Cardiologist for heart, neurologist or psychiatrist for brain.

Jumping OUT of medicine entirely and laying that responsibility on teachers is as ridiculous as firefighters performing open heart surgery... No matter HOW many heart attacks they deal with each week!

But teachers CAN generally spot a neurological disorder the same way a firefighter can spot a heart attack.

Doesnt mean they're always right. What looks like a heart attack may be PTSD, or a pulmonary embolism. What looks like ADHD might be malnutrition or bad parenting.

3 moms found this helpful

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