As the new academic year approaches, it’s time to explore avenues…
Schools for ADHD
Schools for ADHD in South Africa
When dealing with a diagnosis – hesitant or firm – of ADHD (attention deficit and hyperactivity disorder), a parent’s first concern will generally jump to education: what schools for ADHD exist? are these schools for ADHD easily accessible? Will these schools for ADHD keep my child on a normative curriculum in line with other students? It can be overwhelming to trudge through the multiple websites, referrals, and information that exists, and making the best choice for your child can definitely be confusing – this article aims to offer some clarity for the path forward when thinking about schools for ADHD.
Most students given a diagnosis of ADHD are perfectly capable of completing a mainstream school curriculum, without having to make the move to any special schools for ADHD permanently – many schools for ADHD that appear online tend to be remedial schools, which may not be the most appealing choice to some families. It is important to remember that this move is not the only option, and when researching schools for ADHD, parents can also keep after-school programmes in mind. One of these after-school programmes is Catch Up Kids – a company that produces individualised ABA (applied behaviour analysis) programmes for children with a variety of learning difficulties.
A common symptom of ADHD, and one that leads to parents searching for schools with ADHD, is the reported inability to concentrate, focus, or generally function in a classroom environment – teachers often refer these children out to remedial schools because there does not seem to be a way to help them cope, and keep with the class. Catch Up Kids uses the principles of ABA in order to teach the very skills needed in which to work optimally within these classrooms. By targeting the skill deficits identified in individual assessments, Catch Up Kids can help children negate the need for specific schools for ADHD.
During an assessment with Catch Up Kids, various aspects of learning are looked at, with specific focus on executive functioning. This refers to such skills as emotional coping, planning, attention, time management, flexibility, meta-cognition, memory, and problem-solving, all of which play a vital role in creating a positive learning experience within a classroom environment: Catch Up Kids helps a child learn how to learn. When researching schools for ADHD, parents are looking for a programme that will lead to their child’s independence over time, and this is exactly what the Catch Up Kids programme offers. By developing these executive functioning skills in children with ADHD, Catch Up Kids allows children to practice the necessary abilities in order to cope within a classroom.
Catch Up Kids programme and Schools for ADHD
An important aspect of a Catch Up Kids programme is the high level of individuality: as the search for schools for ADHD will show, no two children with the diagnosis will share the exact skill deficits, therefore broad and general schools for ADHD are not going to be ideal – one size does not fit all. With Catch Up Kids, each child is assessed across multiple learning areas, and a specific programme is designed to suit the specific skill set needed by the child. With this individualised programme, no time is wasted working on skills that your child already has, and more effort is put into those areas which require the extra help.
Another reason a parent may research schools for ADHD is that a child with learning difficulties will often show a sharp decline in confidence. These children recognise that they are struggling in class, and their self-esteem can take a knock leading to an attitude change with regards to school work: they may show an aversion to completing tasks, or even to try an activity. Catch Up Kids prides itself in being able to build up this self-confidence again by starting at the level of each child, and setting small, attainable goals that the child is able to reach and take pride in before accepting a new challenge.
To return to the initial questions regarding schools for ADHD: what schools for ADHD exist? Catch Up Kids has the unique ability to add to a mainstream, remedial, or bridging class and build up the necessary skills outside of school hours, they also may be able to offer facilitation within the already established classroom if this is deemed important. Are these schools for ADHD easily accessible? Along with the individualised learning programme designed for each child, Catch Up Kids offers an individualised scheduling system: Catch Up Kids will fit into the school, and extracurricular activity, schedule of the child, as well as conduct sessions at a location best suited to the family – this can be at one of multiple centres across Johannesburg, Pretoria, and Durban, or even at the family home. Will these schools for ADHD keep my child on a normative curriculum in line with other students? Catch Up Kids aims to keep a child aligned with the curriculum followed by the school, and incorporates specific skills into homework that is sent, while continuing to work on academic building block that may be holding a child back within their current grade.
Once a concern has been raised by a teacher, or a diagnosis has been given, the search for schools with ADHD is the initial step taken by many families, finding Catch Up Kids can be the final step taken in this journey. The individualised programme design offered by Catch Up Kids can offer support to any child, with any learning difficulties, and the specially trained staff working in a one-on-one setting guarantees that skills are being learned. By contacting Catch Up Kids, a parent is setting their child up for success, no matter the concerns identified: with Catch Up Kids and ABA, learning is always happening, and the child’s confidence in their abilities will show.