- ADD is no longer an acceptable medical term, replaced solely now by ADHD.
- Per the CDC, ADHD affects 11% of our 14- to 17-year-olds; that adds up to some 6.4 million children, and the numbers are rising.
- There are three different categories of ADHD:
- Those with INATTENTIVE ADHD struggle to stay on task and concentrate on just one thing. They also often make careless mistakes, have trouble paying attention, fail to follow through on directions, homework, and/or chores. Moreover, they are also often unorganized, seem not to listen when being spoken to, and likely to lose things.
- Those with HYPERACTIVE-IMPULSIVE ADHD have trouble sitting still, needing to get out of their seats on occasion and even wander about the classroom. Symptoms include fidgeting, tapping hands and/or feet, and feeling restless. Talking excessively and Interrupting others is common as are having trouble waiting their turn and quietly engaging in leisurely activities.
- Those with COMBINATION ADHD show signs of both Inattentive and Hyperactive-Impulsive ADHD.
- Only physicians or other health care professionals can diagnose ADHD.
- For some, symptoms resolve themselves over the years; if not, symptoms can become less noticeable and bothersome.
- Symptoms can also change over time, such as excessive running about morphing into fidgeting and feelings of restlessness in teens.
- According to parent surveys, about 50% of children with ADHD continue to experience symptoms as adults.
- ADHD can manifest itself even in adults.
- The Individuals with Disabilities Act of 1975 (IDEA) covers ADHD under the “other health impairment” category and ensures that students with a disability are provided with a Free Appropriate Public Education (FAPE) that meets their individual needs.
In fact, IDEA ensures that the more than 6.5 million infants, toddlers, and kids of all ages with disabilities receive the services they need and “governs how states and public agencies provide early intervention, special education, and related services” to them.
Meanwhile, an appropriate education as defined by FAPE can mean enrollment in a regular education class, a regular ed setting with special aids and services, or special education in a separate classroom for part or all of the day
- Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 protects children with disabilities that, for the most part, limit “one or more major life activities,” such as learning in the case of ADHD and safeguards them against discrimination. It also requires public school districts to provide that free and appropriate education to all students with a disability regardless of its nature or severity.
- Whenever a school district suspects a student has a disability that may require special education and/or related services, it must conduct an evaluation.
- Parents can also request an evaluation when ADHD is suspected.
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