Reply To: Is This Illegal?

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Hello – I am a School Counselor at an elementary school and work with students who are experiencing the difficulties that come with ADHD. Here are my thoughts:
1) Know your rights, but wait to use the legality card until you have had a chance to gather all the details.
2) Meet with the Principal first. You will likely get sent there anyway. Approach it from the perspective of better understanding of what occurred. Listen first. You might even share some of their concerns and if so, verbalize it so they recognize your understanding. THIS IS HUGE as they are more likely to support your kiddo and approach this from a team perspective.
3) Go in with a list of your concerns.
4) Follow up the meeting with an email restating what you heard and what you shared. KEEP THIS EMAIL.
5) Go to the Student Services Director for support in helping your student “access his education” while meds are being adjusted.
6) Get a medical statement from your Dr that acknowledges the diagnosis
7) Meet with the school counselor and start the process for a 504. The accommodations should look like:
* For the students safety, communication to the parents must occur on days he sleeps or seems “unlike himself” during periods of medication adjustment.
* Location provided for sleep on days he is not able to stay awake. (I and the office provide this at my school)
* Ability to access snacks and water during classroom instruction as the medication may alter his appetite. Snacks are typically provided by the family
* Behavior Support Plan (if medication adjustment is creating behaviors are impacting his access to school. This should include the behavior, the response from staff, the response from parents, and emotional support.
* School to provide work he has missed due to his diagnosis
*If needed, emotional regulation training by School Counselor
8) Try to get everything in an email for records. This means if someone calls you, follow up with an email to confirm what was said.
9) Most of us “public school personnel” are good people. We are human too and we can make mistakes. I hope you and the school can connect as a team to make this work for you student.