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Summer School Lessons for Parent and Child

Make sure everyone knows that, when it comes to the education of your child with ADHD: You’re watching, you expect excellence, and you’ll complain if you don’t get it.

It’s day eight of summer school — four days to go. We stuck it out, and it’s gotten better. But, I came really close to pulling Natalie out.

I consulted the director of special education a second time, to ask about the goals of the program.

Is there an academic component, or is the goal to provide structure? She referred me to a new school administrator, in charge of the at-risk program. We talked, and I came away from the conversation believing that the program will be much different, and much stronger, next year.

Don and I talked, and we decided to have Natalie finish the session.

The next day, I got a phone call from Gayle, Nat’s in-home therapist. Based on how Natalie described interactions with her teacher, she recommended pulling her out. The teacher’s style was counterproductive to Nat’s emotional needs.

Another long talk with Don. We didn’t pull her out. And I think it was the right decision.

I learned two things from this summer school experience.

The first is to make sure everyone knows that, when it comes to the welfare of your child with ADHD: You’re watching. You expect excellence. And you’ll complain if you don’t get it.

And second, expect a tough adjustment period with any new experience. Don’t pull your child out, or let her quit something too soon. Given time, your child might do better.

And if so, you’ve both learned something.

Updated on May 27, 2021

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