- Edmonton Public School Board (EPSB)
- Accommodations. These are changes made in the classroom to make learning easier for your child, and can be as simple as sitting in the front, near the teacher. ADDitude Magazine gives information about common accommodations. You and the school can agree on accommodations informally, or, if your child is coded, you can request an Individualized Program Plan (IPP), which is kept with your child’s record. Knowledgeable mental health therapists can work with staff to implement effective accommodations.
- Strategies Program, on-site. The Strategies Program is offered at various EPSB schools. Your child’s learning challenges need to be significantly below average to qualify for provincial coding and funding (Learning Disability). In these smaller classrooms students learn strategies to deal with their learning difficulties. Unfortunately, ADHD is not considered to be a learning disability.
- Strategies Program, stand-alone campus. The staff at the Academy at King Edward does an excellent job working with children to ensure they can be successful in school. This is not a long-term program. The intent is that children will be at the Academy for one or at most two years, and then go back to their neighbourhood schools. Once again, your child needs to be diagnosed with Learning Disability to qualify for attendance at the Academy. Unfortunately, ADHD is not considered to be a learning disability.
- Edmonton Catholic School District (ECSD)
Edmonton Catholic School District is focused on inclusive education, where all students are included in regular classrooms. You can request accommodations. These are changes made in the classroom to make learning easier for your child, and can be as simple as sitting in the front, near the teacher. ADDitude Magazine gives information about common accommodations You and the school can agree on accommodations informally, or, if your child is coded, you can request an Individualized Program Plan (IPP), which is kept with your child’s record. Knowledgeable mental health therapists can work with staff to implement effective accommodations.
- Edmonton Academy
Established in 1983 as an Independent school, the Edmonton Academy receives partial Alberta Education grants and parents pay a tuition fee. In 2013, the parent tuition fees for elementary were $6,700. For Junior/Senior High School the fees were $8,900.
The school takes students who have a diagnosed learning disability, some of whom also have ADHD. The focus is on students who are able to learn and who are engaged in their education. Students at the Edmonton Academy have a good behavioral history in school and don’t typically have other issues that impact their learning (i.e. social/emotional difficulties).
They usually have classes for students in grades 6 to 12, depending on enrollment. They have a 6:1 student/teacher ratio in Language Arts and Math, and approximately 12:1 in the other subject areas. They do not modify the curriculum, only how it is taught, and all of their students are on Individualized Program Plans.
- High School Outreach Programs
- Edmonton Public School Board operates the Learning Store High School Outreach Program. It is designed to fit the lifestyle and learning style of students who are returning to school, are upgrading, or need flexibility in their schedules.
- Edmonton Catholic School District offers Part-Time Alternative Self-Paced School (PASS). PASS is an alternative part-time high school program for students who want a self-paced, individualized approach to their education. They also have Fresh Start & Partners for Youth Programs, which offer an opportunity for students to have an alternative to a high school classroom setting to reconnect with education in a meaningful, personal, and supportive manner. Their goal is to offer high school courses and support services to help students overcome obstacles and develop behaviors that will help them become educationally and personally successful to achieve high school completion.
If this is an option for your family, and you have a relationship with your child that is productive, you might consider homeschooling for a time. Alberta Education and the Alberta Distance Learning Centre offer a lot of support in terms of curriculum, textbooks, and other resources. There is also an Alberta association of homeschoolers.
Please note that AAGE does not endorse or recommend any program provided by these districts or schools. Therefore, please research programs before you make your decision.