- Published: October 31, 2021
- Updated: October 31, 2021
- University / College: California Institute of Technology (Caltech)
- Language: English
- Downloads: 2
The article, Tourette’s Syndrome: A Primer for School Leaders initially focuses on the school related problems of Marc, a student with Tourette’s Syndrome (TS).
Marc is a student who was sent to the principal’s office for causing disruptive noises and for starting a fight in the classroom. Causing uncontrolled noises were not intentionally done as the tics, involuntary repetitive movements and other disruptive noises are characteristics of TS. Students with TS are a heterogeneous group as each may or may not require any special accommodation depending on how the symptoms may cause class disruption. The greatest challenge that these students encounter does not solely rest on people’s reaction towards their disorder but also in the embarrassment and frustration that their tics have caused. The article also discusses the social and emotional consequences of the behavior problems associated with TS. Although the intelligence test scores of students with TS are normal, many students have significant impairment in their ability to learn, to read and to retain information and may require specialized education programs as their behaviors are related to hyperactivity in addition to other problems such as phobias, panic attacks, anxiety and speech problems.Awareness about Tourette’s Syndrome is the key towards the understanding and acceptance of students with this lifelong disorder. Classroom teachers may be torn between providing appropriate education for students with TS and being concern with classroom management.
All these needs must be addressed as all students deserve to be provided with suitable education programs and services. When a new student with TS is enrolled in a school, teachers and staff must be given information about this disability so they will know what to expect from this student and how to manage other students who may be affected by the presence of a disruptive classmate or schoolmate. In the first day of classes, the parents of the student with TS may be invited to talk about their child’s disorder and teachers may explain the accommodations that will be made to reduce the triggers to tics and how other students can assist both the student with TS and the teachers.