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What Testing Are Public School Required to Do??

If a child is having problems in school, are public school required to test the child for ADHD at a parents request? Or does the parent need to seek outside sources to test?

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Only a medical doctor can diagnose ADHD. School can provide a screening to see if ADHD tendacies are observed at school by the child's teachers.

ADHD and ADD are medical diagnosis. A school canNOT test for these. A doctor has to make that diagnosis. A school can test for learning disabilities.

I taught in a public school for 7 years, and it was my understanding that ADHD was not something we were able to test for, and in most cases a teacher wasn't supposed to bring it up unless the parent asked. There are things a school tests for: learning disabilities like dyslexia and others, speech, seeing and hearing, but not usually ADHD. At least in my experience, that was something the parent took the child to the doctor to discuss. Good luck!

More Answers

J.,

The school district is not required to diagnose your child. Depending on where you live, your district might offer basic diagnostic services. I strongly recommend that you contact your pediatrician. He/she can make recommendations for extensive diagnosis and ongoing care. If you live in the Dallas/Fort Worth area, you should consider Scottish Rite Hospital. They have a wonderful diagnostic department.

When my two boys were in elementary school, the teachers "diagnosed" them as having ADHD because they didn't want to sit still when the teachers wanted them to. They were bored! When the teachers finally decided to observe their behaviors, they gave the boys extra help assignment to keep them engaged during class time. It worked. Be careful about the term "having problems", especially if that's the term the teacher uses. Most teachers are not flexible in their approach to the individual children. Children are naturally curious and are not designed to sit behind a desk receiving lectures. They want to experience life and learn by doing.

If you do have your child tested, and if it's determined that your child has ADHD or any other special need, you will need to STAY ON TOP OF THE SCHOOL!! The schools in my district talk a good story, and don't force the teachers to follow the IEP (individual education plan). They are required BY LAW to offer the accommodations that your doctor recommends, but you won't know whether or not they do unless your child tells you. Call meetings to stay on top of the plan, and don't be bullied by the Principal or other administration. You have the right to speak with the core education team any time you perceive a problem with your child.

Best of luck.

1 mom found this helpful

I've never known a school who didn't cooperate with ADD testing---which in my experience is nothing more than the Conner questionnaire. The teachers and the parents will answer the questions and then send you to the pediatrician. The pediatrician will usually look at the documents and write you a prescription. Maybe it might go differently for you, but I'd be SHOCKED.

Please consider looking at the root source of the problem and truly solving it instead of medicating it.

www.parentswithpurpose.com

1 mom found this helpful

The school district should provide the testing to determine if your child qualifies for special ed services. You should speak with the school counselor or diagnostician. The school will only do testing to determine if there is a learning disability or performance discrepancy between the child's IQ and the child's achievement with school work. This is what qualifies the student for special ed services. ADD and ADHD are medical conditions and as such must be diagnosed by a physician. Having said that I would have the school test for a learning disability. Students with learning disabilities often present like students with ADD or ADHD. The school testing is a good place to start.

1 mom found this helpful

It has been 6 years since I took my child out of public school. When we thought there may be a problem I spoke to the school counselor. My child was not a behavior problem, he would just sit there and look at everything in the room if there was not someone there to keep him focused. The counselor gave both the teacher and I a sheet to fill out and give back to her, then she went over it. After she looked it over we had a meeting in which she said that it was possible that he could be ADD. I want to stress that she did not diagnose as only a medical professional can. Eight years ago you could go to your family doctor/pediatrician. I don't know what the protocols are for today but I would start with the school counselor and go from there. Also, another piece of advice she gave me was that if your child is truly ADD/ADHD the medication will work otherwise it will have no effect and then you will know that it is something else. Good luck from someone who has been there.

1 mom found this helpful

I would highly recommend Dr. Peter Ray in Dallas as someone who could help you figure out if your child has ADD or ADHD. He is an expert with these kids and he's supposed to be amazing at figuring out the medication part of it if you choose that direction.

Also, take the report he gives you (or whoever you go to) to your school and ask for services to help your child. They might not be able to diagnose (and most of the time you don't really want them to because they have their own interests to look after) but they do have to provide your child services if he needs it. You can request anything that will help your child be a better student at school. For example with test taking, which is a big one, you can ask for him to be in a quiet room, if your child doesn't get enought physical activity during the school day or if he melts down when he gets overstimulated you can ask for whatever you think will help him in those situations.

But without a diagnosis in hand you won't be able to get these things. And I second the advice to not go to your pediatrician for this. Just my past experience and it sounds like alot of other people feel the same way.

Good luck to you.

1 mom found this helpful

Hello J.,

My sons teacher in 1st grade ask me to have him tested. She said the school has a list to give the parents more like a check list. But anyhow she said you take it home and write down what you think the answers are, its questions like, Does your son sit in one place very long? or When he is working does he have to get up and move round during this time? Is he able to complete task giving?... those type of questions. The teacher has a simular list to do as well what she see's They are not reqired to test them that is up to a Doctor but, once the list is over on both parent and teacher then you take both of them to the doctor and he will make a decision weather or not to go further with any testing. Fornately my son wasn't. It might be your son is just bored with the teacher or the work. If he already knows the work then he is bored and has already done all of this. Don't sit there and let teachers put a label on your child let the doctor do it, but, it is ok to have them checked out We did find out my son has Dyslexia here is a web site that can help if it comes to needing information about it. http://www.neurofeedbackholiday.com/dyslexia.htm Kids with this DO have learning diablities. Good luck

T.

1 mom found this helpful

Schools do not test children for ADHD or ADD. They are not even allowed to suggest it. You will need to see your child's doctor for that.

There is not test for ADHD. It is a clinical diagnosis that only a medical doctor can make. The teachers can tell you if hey see characteristics of ADHD. Many schools have check lists the doctor will want to see. Sometimes the doctors have their own check list. ADHD is a condition, until it has a significant educational impact it is not a disability. Many children have ADHD and with medication can succeed in the classroom with extra support. If you child needs modifications, those can be obtained through 504 or alternative services. Districts call them different things. Special education is only for most severe. Most districts do Response to Intervention (RtI) for special education. It is part of IDEiA 2004. District must try research based interventions to determine if they will help your child before a referral to special education. It is very detailed and confusing. Many people many offer advice based on the way special education used to do things, but the new law completely changed how schools do things for learning disabilities and ADHD (which is covered under Other Health Impaired) Talk to your school, they will know how it is done.

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