Wednesday, April 15, 2009

CHADD on April 20

Seems like it has been a while since McHenry County had an active CHADD group and now it does. What is CHADD? Children and Adults with Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder.

The April Parent CHADD meeting's guest speaker will be Cari Levin, LCSW, who will speak on the topic of "How to manage a stressful life: Survival Kit for Parents of Special Needs Children". Scheduled for Monday, April 20th at 6:45PM, the meeting -- which is open to all -- will be held at Family Service's 3rd floor community room. Free childcare services are provided.

Family Service is located at 4100 Veterans Parkway, just east of Route 31 and south of Gary Lang Auto Group. Questions? Call Sherry Blass at 815/385-6400.

I visited a CHADD group in about 1997, when I was first learning about mental health issues. I was the "token male" at the meeting, and one of the woman mentioned a special education rights advocate from Crystal Lake. She had had significant problems at her child's school, and she said the advocate from Crystal Lake was one mean (well, I'll leave out her exact words). I made sure I got his name and phone number from her, and he was immensely helpful in dealing with District 200.

I hired him to attend an IEP, and it lasted 3 hours and 45 minutes - without a break. The attorney for the school district was there, because she heard he would be there. In the last 15 minutes I rejected everything they offered. The attorney asked what we wanted, and I named four accommodations. Her response? "No problem."

If he hadn't been there, we wouldn't have gotten any of them! And so I'll always thank that CHADD group, whoever they were at that time. I don't even recall where that meeting was held - somewhere in McHenry, I think.

Check out the national group's website at

No comments: