An exploratory study looking at attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and the role that schools play in helping children with ADHD

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Brett, Deirdre
Issue Date
BA Counselling and Psychotherapy
Dublin Business School
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Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) is believed to have a prevalence rate of between three and six per cent of school going children (APA, 1994). This would make it the most prevalent of childhood behavioural disorders. This study looks at ADHD and the role that schools play in helping children with ADHD. Thirty schools were selected to participate in this study. The schools were predominately located in the east and south of the country and every attempt was made to target an even distribution of males and females. The questionnaire was designed to examine the assessment tools that schools use to identify children with ADHD, the support services available to schools in the management of children with ADHD and finally the intervention strategies that schools use in an attempt to effectively help and manage children who have ADHD. The results show a lack of consistency between schools in all of these areas. How a child is supported and helped depends on which school they attend. The variances can be explained in terms of a lack of information, lack of adequate support services and a lack of financial resources. These resources need to be provided to schools if they are expected to effectively manage and help children who have ADHD.