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Old 04-07-2009, 08:15 AM
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Originally Posted by JustJulia View Post
Don't worry, teachers are not allowed to prescribe any kind of medicine, mind-altering or otherwise.
Literally they cannot write the script you take to the drug store, but they can and do demand that the child be medicated, effectively being the person that makes the decision that the child will be medicated.
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Old 04-07-2009, 08:17 AM
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Originally Posted by lisdol View Post
Ditto what Julia replied to you; in addition, I am not sure that the school district psychologist is allowed to make a diagnosis. That may be a state by state thing, but I remember hearing that the diagnosis has to come from an independent psychologist or MD.
Again not talking about the person that signs the prescription, but the person that is effectively the person that determines that a child will be medicated.
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Old 04-07-2009, 08:23 AM
Location: The Hall of Justice
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Originally Posted by Asheville Native View Post
Literally they cannot write the script you take to the drug store, but they can and do demand that the child be medicated, effectively being the person that makes the decision that the child will be medicated.
Not my kids, not my school district. I love all my kids' teachers and administrators. They have been nothing but supportive and helpful. Of course I hear stories about the evil schools marching in lockstep with the evil pharmaceutical companies trying to strongarm parents into drugging their children into submission, but I think most of those stories are hearsay or overblown. I don't personally know anyone that's happened to.
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Old 04-08-2009, 08:18 AM
Location: LEAVING CD
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Originally Posted by bookworm2768 View Post
Thank you so much for your response. I think it helped a lot. I believe out teacher this year is one of the most helpful and understanding teachers we have had to date. I will take your advice and ask for a meeting so that we can explain what our plan is and work as a team.
In the past we have had teachers who were not quite so open to his needs and that has made me wary of dealing with the school. You are so right, though, if we have an open dialogue and approach this as a team hopefully we can all support him through this.
I do have a question for you though:
We're in Texas and the state mandated testing will begin next year. The school administration is almost obsessive about the tests and I think that is where we will get the most pressure from. If it takes him longer to complete tests or if he is not as organised initially it does not concern me. I do not think it will last long term. However, the school emphasises production and I am worried that they will have a big problem with his drop in performance. Any advice on how to handle that? Thanks
If you do not have an IEP or 504 yet then I highly suggest you request the process be started. To protect you it should be done in writing. If you do have an IEP then you need to contact the school and ask for a modification where your child is allowed more time to complete tasks or given the test verbally. You can also request that he be tested alone so he has no distractions. These are all mods that are easy to do and if requested and entered into the IEP or 504 they have to do them.
As for the meds, we went through all of 'em with our 17 yr old and only found one that worked well with no side affects like facial ticks and stuttering. Some kids I've seen do better without the meds and just caffine, some kids (like mine) do the meds and add caffine if a big test is going to happen.
We've got a friend who's son only takes meds when testing and all other times he's just his normal self. From your discription this sounds alot like Michael. This kid is very outgoing and happy, a regular social butterfly but is prone to lack impulse control and so does wacky things. Nothing mean or hateful just wacky like when he was in about 5th grade he wanted to see if his tounge would stick to our chain link fence rail when it was about 10 degrees out so he licked it and yes it did. Funny as heck but this is Michael. He wanted to see if he could balance on his deck fence rail that was on the second story so he did that only to ignore that it was windy at the time and got blown off. Hurt his shoulder but laughed the whole time as did everyone else. This is Michael... Very creative, very funny, very likeable but always on the go and not very organized. Does his homework but forgets to turn it in and fidgets alot in class.
He's been this way since I've known him and he's 16 now and doing ok in school and is also doing an apprenticeship as a machinist runing computerized lathes and milling machines tapping into his creativity.
The bottom line to this story is it sounds as though your child is better off not on meds right now and it sounds as if a good IEP with the proper modifications would work for you. There really is nothing that can't be placed in an IEP so spend some time thinking about what you need.
Be aware though, while meds don't work for you now the whole shootin' match can and usually does change when the hormones kick in (as in puberty!).
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Old 04-12-2009, 09:06 PM
Location: Fort Thomas, Arizona
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Kudos to you for wanting to give your son the opportunity to modify his own behavior and not jumping back into medication. It will take persistence, but it can most certainly be done.

As for the school, do not allow them to pressure you into anything, including medicating your child. You are the parent, and you call the shots- not them. Some schools are supportive when children are taken off of their medication, while others will go out of their way to make things difficult for you. Stay strong, and if necessary, pull out the "medical confidentiality" card. If the school becomes insistent and pressures you to medicate your child, tell them that you do not wish to discuss your child's medication, health history or any other confidential information. If they'd like to discuss his behavior, that's fine. Health history? Nope. Tell them it's confidential.

Hang in there!
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Old 04-18-2009, 08:29 AM
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Originally Posted by bookworm2768 View Post
our 8yo had an ADD diagnosis and has been medicated for it for 2 years now. He was first on Adderall which was horrible. He was like a zombie, depressed and agressive. His teacher loved it since he did his work! So, we pulled him off it and switched him to Strattera. It did help him focus but we had the same issues of irritability, aggression and depression. Then the school started hinting that perhaps these behaviors indicate an Autistic spectrum disorder! So, over spring break we stopped the meds completely.

Our kid is back to being the happy, easygoing, social little being he used to be. However, he is not getting his work done in school and won't stop talking! No aggression or crankiness but this previously 'Antisocial-perhaps-autistic' child is suddenly a social butterfly and is driving his teachers nuts.

Here's the problem - I think he needs a few months to settle down and digest what his issues are. He has not had to deal with all this energy in two years and I think, with time, he will get better at it. He is definitely willing to try.

However, I think the school is going to start pressuring us to put him back on the meds. At this point I have no desire to revert to medication without giving him a chance to learn coping skills and to try his hand at self control. Any pointers on how to deal with the school?
Has anyone been through this before?
Any tips on how I can help him with self control?
Have you considered home schooling? Or maybe a school with a smaller teacher-student ratio? My daughters best friend was energtic and outgoing in preschool, 1st and 2nd. Then they put her on medication and now she just sits and stares. My daughter doesn't want to play with her anymore because she doesn't communicate and "isn't fun to play with". Do teachers really want to turn our children into robots? I know there are more students they need to control but don't suppress there God given energy. Learn about some of the brillant minds that struggled in school (Edison, Einstein). Many successful people today say that had they been a child in school today they would have had a hard time and may have been medicated to make them conform. Some children require parents to be more creative in our ways of parenting. Some children have different learning styles. Take it one school year at a time and try to find the best learning environment for your child.
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Old 05-25-2009, 12:12 PM
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my daughter has an autistic spectrum disorder and it definitely impacts her life. In addition she is diabetic which greatly affects her moods. Over the years I have discovered several things that have helped. she has never been medicated as I was always opposed to it. The most crucial turning point for us was at 9 the school system decided she would never LEARN academics and permanent placement in a LIFE SKILLS class was our option. I am not a school basher, however I could never keep a job due to all her school issues, her behavior was extreme meltdowns beforel, during and after school, etc,etc. I decided to homeschool and as difficult as it is, she is learning. However the most important thing homeschooling did was allow me to address her behavior. Behavior modification works really well. We went to a behavior specialist who helped me attack the issues surrounding the behavior. She is not predictable even now. But she is a wonderful little 13 year old who has developed interests, learned to read and enjoy it sometimes, and can do some math. I believe she can spend her whole life learning so what is the rush in school? Also, being around her enabled me to see the cause and effect of everything. Homeschooling is certainly not for everyone, in her case I hope to let her go to high school the last two years. she will be able to attend public school until she is 21. hope this helps.
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Old 05-26-2009, 08:27 AM
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JustJulia, I am envious of your school system!

Froggin, can we clone you and put you in more schools? In Maryland in particular, lol? Great post! While I have met a couple of teachers like you, more are sorely needed.

Asheville Native, I understand where you're coming from. When it comes to behavioral issues, some schools will find subtle ways to pressure you into medicating your child. Like, demand that you pick your child up from school early, repeatedly suspend your child, encourage parents to write letters of complaint about your child, etc. If the behavior is extreme, the school may try to classify your child as ED BD and move him or her out of the school. So, no, the teachers don't hold the prescription pad, but I've heard many a story about hinting around about meds. It's sad, really.
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