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CASE STUDY Ahmed, Supplementary, Social/emotional

Year level
Educational setting
Mainstream school

Level of adjustment
Category of disability
Included in data collection

Ahmed's story

Ahmed is a 6-year-old boy who attends a local primary school. He enjoys sports and music. Ahmed is very energetic and finds it hard to sit still and maintain his concentration during class time. As a result, Ahmed struggles to complete tasks, has difficulty managing his emotions and can lash out when frustrated or stressed. He is starting to fall behind his peers across a range of learning areas. 

The school psychologist was asked to advise Ahmed’s classroom teacher on strategies to help him regulate his behaviour and his ability to focus on his learning. The teacher noted that she had already consulted with Ahmed’s parents and was implementing various adjustments to support Ahmed’s attention and focus on tasks. 

The school psychologist gathered detailed family and developmental history and completed classroom and playground observations. A Conners Comprehensive Behaviour Rating Scales questionnaire completed by Ahmed’s teacher and parents indicated very elevated scores in the areas of inattention and hyperactivity/impulsivity. As such, further investigation through a paediatrician is warranted. Ahmed has been referred to a paediatrician, but the waiting list is lengthy and Ahmed will not be seen there until towards the end of the year. 

The school team, together with the school psychologist and Ahmed’s parents, agreed to implement a range of educational adjustments as part of his personalised learning plan including: 

  • visual supports
  • timers for tasks
  • positive reward system 
  • preferential grouping and seating in the classroom 
  • regular brain and movement breaks – supervised by a senior staff member 
  • individual literacy remediation with a teaching assistant, three times per week for 40 minutes 
  • small-group interventions to support learning strategies relating to emotional regulation 3 times per week for 45 minutes.  

Information that supports inclusion in the NCCD What's this?

  • Step 1. Is there an adjustment to address disability? Yes

    Yes, adjustments are provided to enable a student with disability to access education on the same basis as other students.

    As defined in the Disability Discrimination Act 1992, Ahmed has an imputed disability. Based on teacher professional judgement, and school psychology initial assessment and clinical opinion, it is believed that Ahmed has a disorder, illness or disease that affects his thought processes, perception of reality, emotions or judgement or that results in disturbed behaviour.

  • Do you have evidence? Yes

    • School psychology report of observations and Conners assessment results
    • School psychology records 
    • Teacher classroom observations and behaviour support data 
    • Referral to paediatrician in place, on a waiting list  
    • Parent meeting records 
    • Parent support of all observations and corroboration of this as true reflection of Ahmed across settings 
  • Step 2. What is the level of adjustment? Supplementary

    • Ahmed receives support in small groups and scheduled one-on-one assistance to support his self-regulation and focus during targeted learning activities. 
    • There are adjustments to the regular educational program at specific times across a variety of lessons during the week.
  • Step 3. What is the category of disability? Social/emotional

    In the absence of a formal diagnosis, the school has identified that Ahmed should be included under the social/emotional category. This is based on the adjustments that are being provided to support Ahmed for an imputed disability, and the likelihood that he will receive a diagnosis of a neuro-divergent disability. 

  • Step 4. Record and submit the data Yes (Student is included)

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