By Arnie Gotfryd, PhD
Educational Director & CEO of Maxi Mind Learning Centres, Inc.
The principal cleared his throat.
“Chaim is a great kid. He’s bright, he’s good-hearted. But he’s just not functioning in the classroom.”
Chaim’s mother felt the muscles in the back of her neck tighten. Chaim’s father was sitting there, too, with a knot in his stomach and lump in his throat. It wasn’t their first time meeting about Chaim’s performance at school, but something about the somber and resolute tone in the Principal’s voice set both parents on edge.
The Principal continued his review, “The gap between Chaim and the other children in the class is widening. Homework is not getting done, classwork is incomplete. He’s out of the classroom more than he’s in, and when he is in, he gets himself into trouble whether accidentally or on purpose.”
“We’ve tried alternate seating, tutoring, OT, guidance, anything we can do to help him keep up but it’s not enough. I think you should speak to your pediatrician and see what can be done. If you can get appropriate medication for him, chances are we will be able to work with him. Otherwise, there is no point.”
Usually, Chaim’s father would let his wife handle these meetings, but he could not restrain himself, “Are you saying ‘Medicate or else?’”
“I didn’t say that,” the principal shot back, rather taken aback by the blunt remark. “I’m not a doctor, but we have dozens of students in the same situation. They take their meds and then they manage to get by, some of them very well.”
“But there are side effects,” Chaim’s mom chimed in. “We tried meds with our older son as you know, but that really did not work out. It affected his eating, his sleep, his mood and his behaviour. We had to keep upping the dosage, and then change the medication, and then we needed a different medication to manage the side effects, and another to manage the side effects of that one. We even know one young man who has been taking ADHD medication since childhood and now he gets seizures and his neurologist believes that his long term use was the cause.
Dad was mad. “This is not right! You are running a community school here, and when you deal with the public you get all kinds. You can’t just take the kids you want and dump the kids you don’t.”
“I’m not dumping anybody. If you are in a classroom you are there to learn. Not only can Chaim not learn, he’s preventing others with his behaviour as well.”
“Well, if the teachers were better trained and the administration was more accommodating…”
“We have very good teachers and we have put all our available resources to work to try and help your son. We’ve done all we can. Now it’s your turn.”
“But we really can’t go this medication route. He doesn’t have an illness. He’s just got trouble focusing and learning.”
“Look. The option is yours. We can’t go on like this. Millions of children take medication to help them focus, concentrate and behave properly. If you want us to take Chaim back next year, you know what to do.”
Chaim’s parents are not alone. This summer alone, parents of kids at five different schools in the Toronto area have told me similar stories.
Fortunately there are options. The new science of neuroplasticity has spawned many new technologies that help train the brain to focus and learn better. Maxi Mind is a leader, perhaps the leader, in this field, creating customized Brain Training Courses that have been proven to improve focusing, learning, mood and behaviour. And all this without medication.
As a bonus Maxi Mind courses are, by and large, fun for the children, teens and adults that take them.
Word of our success is spreading and many teachers, principals, psychologists and pediatricians are now recommending Maxi Mind to their students and patients.
We invite you to share in the success that many of our clients have had boosting their performance in school, in work and in life, while at the same time avoiding, decreasing or even eliminating medication altogether.
Because at the end of the day, it’s all about Chaim, and the successful, happy and healthy future he deserves.
For more information or to book a free consultation, call 416-858-9868 or visit www.maximind.ca today!