New Year, New Student: 3 Steps to Receive Accommodations at School

Want a New Student in 2019?

Photo by Brooke Lark on Unsplash

As a teacher, I have sat across a conference table from dozens of parents requesting accommodations for their ADHD child. Adopting accommodations can make a significant improvement in a child’s performance.


A Reason to Celebrate

After about 4 years of blood, sweat, tears (and moolah) spent on my son and his inattentive ADHD diagnosis, I FINALLY received accommodations!  The most common are sitting close to the teacher, reduce distractions, repeat directions, frequent breaks, extended time on tests and assignments, breaking up assignments and projects into smaller parts and monitoring test response.   Here are 3 simple steps to get them within 6 months (or less).  Disclaimer, I live in Maryland so I cannot guarantee that this will work for you in another state, but at least you know how to start the process.  This is a great resource for FEDERAL LAW surrounding special education services.


 3 Quick Steps to Receive Accommodations at School

Step 1:

Let your child’s pediatrician know you suspect ADHD and ask him to write a letter to your school explaining the stress and anxiety your child has about school and school work.

Photo by Michał Grosicki on Unsplash

Step 2:

Present the letter to your child’s assigned school counselor (you can find that information on the school’s website or by calling and asking the school secretary).


Step 3:

You will be invited to a meeting to establish a 504 Plan for your child.  If you are NOT invited to a meeting you need to request a 504 meeting with the school and copy the principal on your email.  By law, the school MUST provide accommodations for your child if he has a medically diagnosed condition, like anxiety or ADHD.  Plan to take a half day, or at least 2 hours off from work to attend this meeting.

Photo by Olya Kuzovkina on Unsplash

This is not the END of your accommodations journey.  It is really just the beginning.  You will need to provide further support (through testing or other documentation) to ensure your child continues receiving the accommodations established at your 504 meeting. Good luck, and NEVER GIVE UP!


Does your child receive accommodations at school?  How did you put them in place?

Published by Family ADDventures

Nicole Santiago is a learning specialist, student advocate, and founder of Family ADDventures. As a specialist, she assesses and teaches clients (adults and adolescents) to manage and grow their executive functioning skills which include emotional regulation, task initiation, and time management. As an advocate (IEP coach), she is a member of COPAA and ensures inclusive (special) education students receive the most appropriate educational services possible. She often collaborates with OT's, SLP's and neuropsychologists all in the name of student improvement and success. Her practice is located in San Antonio, TX, and everywhere (virtually). The author grew up an army brat and spends time with her three ND children and husband in Puerto Rico whenever possible. She writes about mental health, parenting, education, and entrepreneurship on her blog:

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