Understanding The Academic Rights Of 504 Plan ADHD Children

By Charles Cox

For many parents, home or private schooling is not an option. They must rely on the public education system. When children have mental and physical disabilities and disorders, getting officials to recognize the problems and take steps to improve them can be difficult, even if the law is on your side. It is often up to the parents to overcome the obstacles for their children and advocate for academic accommodations that will suit their needs according to 504 Plan ADHD law.

When you have a school age child dealing with attention disorders, the first thing you need to do is become familiar with the law regarding their educational rights. There are two basic federal laws concerning special education. They are Section 504 of the Federal Rehabilitation Act and the Individuals With Disabilities Education Act.

Section 504 covers ADHD youngsters. They may not qualify for special education services, but they are entitled to preferential seating, extra testing time, and note taking assistance. As a parent, you cannot just assume the classroom teacher will make these accommodations available to your kid. You will have to go through the proper steps and channels to ensure the law is applied in your youngster's case.

Contacting your school system's special education services committee, in writing, to request an evaluation should be the initial step. Teachers do not have the authority to approve your request. The letter you send needs to be certified or personally delivered. Do not be overly worried if you are initially turned down. A private assessment, outside the system if necessary, is your youngster's right.

You youngster's evaluation will include observation, behavior assessment, and academic reports. The professionals who conduct the assessment might include a school psychologist, special education and other professionals. You need to be involved in the process and become a member of this team in order to maximize your chances of a successful outcome. Parents need to keep detailed notes and retain any paperwork for their records.

Once the evaluation process is completed and your child has been approved, it is time to put a proposal, specific to your youngster, in place. It is not unusual for school administrators to advocate for programs they already have in place. This makes the job easier for them, but may not be the best solution for your child.

Even though an agreed upon set of actions has been put in place, you will still have to be an aggressive advocate for your child. The plan should be monitored and reviewed. By law, school administrators do not have to conduct annual reviews, but most do. You have the right to be involved in the reviews and request additional meetings throughout the school year if appropriate.

Having a child with special challenges is not easy. Ensuring they have everything they need to maximize their academic potential can be frustrating. Arming yourself with information and becoming a persistent advocate for your youngster will make all the difference.

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