Teach heart first.

As an educator, no one sees more clearly than you that the struggle for a child with ADHD is very real. You want to help all you can. Know that you are not alone in your efforts to help those students and their families. Partnering with parents or caregivers and other school support team members from the early stages is key to that child's success. You've got this.

School Support Team

Learn about school support team members and their individual roles and responsibilities


  • Helping set up additional support for children with ADHD
  • Providing additional support
  • Reporting on progress

and Other

  • Approving requests for evaluations for additional support for children with ADHD
  • Helping set up additional support
  • Collaborating with teachers and other school support team members to ensure they have what they need to provide additional support

School Psychologists

  • Assessing and evaluating behavior
  • Helping provide additional support for children with ADHD
  • Addressing behavior issues
  • Teaching children with ADHD the skills they can use to manage daily tasks

School-Based Occupational Therapists

  • Assessing how children use their senses (e.g., sight, hearing, touch) to organize and respond to information
  • Using therapy centered on using the senses

School Nurses

  • If a child is prescribed medication for ADHD, giving the child the medication exactly as the doctor tells him or her to take it
  • Keeping parents/caregivers, teachers, other school support team members and community-based support team members informed about children's responses to medication in the school setting

Case Managers

  • Coordinating additional support for children who are receiving help from several support team members in school and/or in the community

Guidance Counselors

  • Helping provide additional support for children with ADHD
  • Assisting with school and career planning

Social Workers

  • Helping provide additional support for children with ADHD

Building Partnerships

Start the conversation and keep it going

Talk with parents and caregivers on a human level. Share your observations objectively, show empathy, and share strategies and ideas for issues that arise. This will help build lasting collaborative partnerships.

Here are good ways to begin

Ask parents and caregivers and the other school support team members how they like to keep in touch (e.g., phone, email or face to face).
Decide how often you will touch base with each other.
Discuss which symptoms the student needs the most help with on a day-to-day basis.
Focus on goals and progress.
Let everyone know that you support and value their efforts to help.
Do your best to maintain positive, open communication.

Getting Off on the Right Foot

The new kid in class and ADHD

When a student with ADHD is placed in your classroom, here are some things you may want to discuss with the parents or caregivers (and, potentially, other school support team members):

  • Establishing daily routines at school for students who have trouble with organization — especially for those who will be learning to navigate the ins and outs of having different teachers for different subjects
  • Reviewing classroom rules and behaviors with their children if you are speaking with the parents or caregivers of students who tend to have hyperactive/impulsive symptoms; asking parents and caregivers to remind their children that the rules are posted on a bulletin board in the classroom
  • Designing seating plans for students who get easily distracted or have difficulties with listening (potentially including seating them near you; with other students who tend to stay on task; and away from windows, doors, or any other high-traffic areas)
  • Providing additional support for students whose schoolwork is being affected by their ADHD symptoms
  • Setting long-term and short-term goals that can be tracked objectively to measure student progress
  • If a student with ADHD is transferring into your class, review written documentation and seek out information from faculty from the student’s previous school