Finding a New School
We will be moving across country this summer. With three children under 10, finding a home in a good school district will be important. How can we learn more about schools in districts the realtors suggest?
With the growth of the internet, it’s become much easier to find out how schools perform academically. Most state departments of education have this information on their websites. In addition, some states and school districts also rate their schools. If you contact the individual school or district office, you can find information such as test scores, tuition, and student-teacher ratios.
Furthermore, many major cities have websites that compare schools by test scores, school environment, student-teacher ratio, and much more. One caution: Some sites are based more on opinion rather than facts. Look on Facebook to find school pages that will reflect parent organizations. Talk to parents in school districts where you are considering living.
If you’re looking for school information about public and private schools in Shelby County, check out Memphis School Guide, a new site that gives detailed information and lets you compare public, private, and charter schools.
Finally, visit a school before making a final decision on where to live and do the following:
Observe the outside area around the school to see if it is in good order.
Take a quick look at halls and bathrooms.
Note how students behave between classes: Are they orderly? Is there signage around the building that encourages positive behavior?
How are individual classrooms decorated?
Notice how students interact with each other, as well as teachers and administrators.
Parents should send questions and comments to firstname.lastname@example.org or ask them on the columnists’ website at dearteacher.com.
Can Preschoolers Be Tested for ADHD?
According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, children as young as 4 can be tested for ADHD. However, few children are diagnosed with this disorder before elementary school, as it is difficult to get a diagnosis before a child turns 5. Nevertheless, an early diagnosis can aid preschoolers who receive behavioral therapy and/or low doses of medication. It also helps if parents enroll in a parent support group.
Keep in mind that many symptoms similar to those of ADHD appear in young children. It is normal for preschoolers to have a high level of activity, an inability to focus for long periods of time, and impulsivity. However, young children with ADHD are far more hyper and impulsive. It can also affect daily moods, productivity, and behavior. The hyperactive child may be on the go almost all the time and not able to still for meals or napping.
If you are concerned your child may have ADHD, have him tested. It’s possible your child’s behavior is due to vision, hearing, or fine-motor difficulties, making it difficult for your child to behave. For an accurate diagnosis, the specialist will need a detailed description of your child’s behavior from you as well as a teacher.