Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity and Disorder (which will be further referred to as ADHD in this article) is a chronic condition that includes a limited attention span, hyperactivity and impulsiveness. ADHD is the most diagnosed mental disorder in children. This condition develops in childhood and can continue to exist even in adulthood. People who have ADHD can have trouble in making friendships as well as difficulty at school and or at work.
Education is a fundamental human right for all as enshrined in Chapter 2 of the Constitution of the Republic of South Africa and the Basic Education Rights Handbook states that a child has a right to attend a mainstream school in their neighbourhood and they should be accommodated in their attempts to do so. This means that children living with this disorder can attend mainstream schools in and around their area but should the disorder affect the child’s success at school then the child can attend a school that will cater for their specific special needs.
This article will focus on ADHD elementary schools in and around Johannesburg. The focus is elementary schools because there is a higher number of children living with this condition more than there are adults. ADHD is incurable but education and training exists that can help improve the functionality of the child and reduce symptoms as well.
Atholhurst Intervention and Multi Education Centre was established and opened in Sandton in 1999. This school aims to provide a solid academic foundation coupled with strong self-esteem and sound social skills. Atholhurst Intervention and Multi Education Centre has two classes: The Intervention class and the Home schooling and focus class. The Intervention class caters for younger children who are in Pre-school and the Junior phase while the Home schooling and focus class mainly focuses on school facilitations for both primary and high school learners.
Japari school is a preparatory school for learners with unique learning styles and differences which was founded over 50 years ago. The school is for children who are in Grade R to Grade 7. The school was founded on the idea that all children deserve an educational environment that is suited for their needs. Japari’s main aim is to address the education of students who have not found success in traditional mainstream schools and whose learning is dependent on personal instruction and unique teaching methods. The school supports academic, sporting and cultural programme. The school is located bear the Johannesburg Zoo in Park View.
Bellavista school is a remedial school that was established in 1967. This school was established with the main purpose of delivering the curriculum to learners with barriers that prohibits them from participating in mainstream education systems. It is a co-educational school from Grades R to 7 (ages 5 to 14). This school is based in Rosebank in Johannesburg and has about 240 learners. Bellavista school aims to remediate difficulties in learning.
ADHD is an incurable condition but through intervention and treatments symptoms can be reduced and functionality increased.