Special Education/recess punishment


my son is 7 and adhd. movement is critical to him.  found out he was being pulled from recess for not listening. He wasn't hurting anyone or doing anything dangerous. he wasnt good in class so they took away recess. I think this is nuts  Is there something I can do. recess is so short to begin with


I represent many students that have ADD/ADHD. Their ability to concentrate is impacted and their minds tend to wander in class. Studies have shown that these children benefit from being physically active. If you son is qualified for special education and has an IEP, you should call for an IEP Team meeting to discuss how keeping him out of recess can negatively impact his concentration and increase his distractibility. Instead, he should be given preferential seating (near the teacher), frequent breaks, and possibly "fidgets" (things he can manipulate in class because they can increase concentration). These are all standard accommodations for students suffering from ADD/ADHD.

If he is not qualified for special education, you might consider writing a letter to the principal asking that he be assessed for special education. Once you make this request in writing, federal law gives the school 15  days to prepare and submit to you an Assessment Plan. Once you sign it, the school has 60 days to conduct the assessments and report their results. It will help him to qualify by having a medical diagnosis of ADD/ADHD. Meantime, you should meet with his teacher and the principal explaining how keeping him in for recess is counter productive and ask for different punishments.  

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Tim Runner


Questions concerning special education: IEP, assessments, Due Process, mediation, resolution conference, federal law, state law, qualifying for services, residential treatment, special day classes, resource specialists, procedures, having your child assessed, adaptive PE, speech & language, non-public school, FAPE, and tuition reimbursement.


I have been an education advocate representing students and parents for six years. My experience includes: representing my clients in IEPs, SSTs, Due Process, review assessment results for my clients, and mediations. I have represented clients with learning disabilities, autism, Downs Syndrome, cognitively challenged, emotional problems, learning disabilities, ADD/ADHD, and physical disabilities. I have also represented clients to County Mental Health Departments and Regional Centers. My clients range from pre-school to college students in many states.

I have a degree in Mathematics from the University of California with minors in Psychology and Physics. I also studied applied statistics in psychology at the graduate level. I have taught college classes, conducted seminars, written articles for various publications, and testified as an expert witness.

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