Your ADHD Education Guide: Effective Accommodations

Experts and parents answer your questions about choosing strong accommodations, setting appropriate goals, and getting the most out of your child’s IEP or 504 plan.

Accommodations that help students with ADHD succeed.
Dear ADDitude: Part 3
Our readers ask: What are the best accommodations and goals for my child’s IEP or 504 plan?



Question 1:

“At least once a week, my son gets in trouble for intentionally pinching, pushing, or pestering another child. What accommodations could we introduce to stem impulsive, sensory-seeking behavior?Read the answer.


Question 2:

“My 10-year-old has a hard time writing legibly and composing his thoughts on paper. He often says his hand hurts, but the school’s occupational therapist has not noticed any problems with his fine motor skills, so the school has ruled out dysgraphia. Could this be something else?” Read the answer.


Question 3:

The accommodations I suggest for my daughter’s 504 Plan keep getting shot down. Meanwhile, her school counselor says she isn’t trying hard enough and uses the words ‘I can’t’ too much. How can I stop this cycle and actually get some useful accommodations in place?” Read the answer.


Question 4:

What makes an academic goal ‘appropriate?’ My son’s school wants him to increase one reading level each year, but he’s already far behind and I’m concerned he’ll never catch up if not pushed harder and given more interventions.” Read the answer.


Question 5:

“My son’s teachers complain almost daily about missing or incomplete work. It’s written into his IEP that they need to confirm he is writing down assignments correctly and prompt him to submit his work, but I am told ‘he is responsible for his assignments,’ or ‘he started off the year doing well’ — so now they think he just doesn’t want to do the work.” Read the answer.


Question 6:

How should we define a ‘successful’ school year? Most parents think in terms of grades, but for us that isn’t always an option and we want to reward our child’s efforts and progress.” Read the answer.


Question 7:

My son’s IEP is one-sided. He’s required to complete a certain percent of work by deadline, for example, but the school is not required to give him extra time for tests or other accommodations. Should I push for more balance?” Read the answer.