Teachers can be great allies in keeping your child with Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder safe and successful in school, but you'll need to make sure they have all the knowledge they need to help. Use these suggestions to create a information packet to bring educators up to speed.
Five Things Teachers Need to Know
1. My child's obsessions and compulsions may appear to be voluntary behaviors, but they are signs of a mental health problem, not a disciplinary problem.
2. Please don't compliment my child on "perfect" work. This may reinforce his need to obsessively check or re-do things.
3. If there will be any sort of change in my child's classroom or routine, please notify me as far in advance as possible so that we can all work together in preparing her for it.
4. My child has significant challenges, but he also has many strengths and gifts. Please use these to help him have experiences of success.
5. Please keep the lines of communication open between our home and the school. My child needs all the adults in her life working together.
Printouts to Share with Teachers
Overview of OCD
OCD at School
Source: OCD Chicago
Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder in Children and Adolescents
Source: Massachusetts General Hospital
Children and Adolescents with Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder: A Primer for Teachers
Source: Community Practitioner
Source: Tourette Syndrome "Plus"