I'm baaaaaaack.

Hoarding All the Glitter Since 2001.

21 August 2012

One down, four to go

I do not really enjoy the first week of school.  Sure, I like meeting new children and their families.  Seeing how systems and lessons planned work for a new class is an intellectual challenge.  But overall, the first week requires lots of things I find challenging: enormous to-do lists of short items, retaining control over paperwork, managing several different information tracks at once, being the repository of all data for many sources (the after school program, families, the office, etc.) - all in all, it's very tiring.  And calmness in the face of chaos and tired children is key.

So I enjoy opportunities for outside items that raise my ire, like this nonsense in the New York Times.  Briefly:

  1. As a teacher, I would be opening myself to serious discipline by suggesting a child be assessed for ADHD.
  2. So I find it suspicious that the teacher in the article did not only suggest the above, but also turned directly toward medication.
  3. Indeed, the way the author recounts the tale suggests the teacher was more interested in control than any actual needs of the child.
  4. I note with interest that the author tells us she took her child to an "upper East side of Manhattan psychiatrist."
  5. This leads me to believe that the author's son was enrolled at a private, competitive school.
  6. So in addition to doubting the existence of the teacher (did she receive a bonus from Shire or similar for every prescription?), I have to wonder to what extent the parent's desires for her child impacted her decision to medicate him.
  7. As someone who spends at least the majority of each year taking ADHD medications, I take offense to the author's conclusion that medication is only really necessary when teachers suck.
  8. In comments on a blog post about the article, readers recount teachers diagnosing their children in  Kindergarten.
  9. ADHD is rarely if ever diagnosed in such young children by anyone at any time.
  10. Teachers are generally aware of the criteria for diagnosis because parents ask about ADHD with some frequency.
  11. Therefore, I doubt the veracity of these drug-pushing Kindergarten teachers.

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