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Students with ADHD less likely to enrol in post-secondary education, study says

OTTAWA — Students with attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder are much less likely to go to college or university than those with no long-term health conditions, according to a new report from Statistics Canada.

The gap suggests teachers need better training in how to work with students whose behaviour can come off as disruptive and who might seem uninterested in their studies, advocates say.

“They are going to have one to three kids with ADHD in every class they teach for the rest of their career, and this is just regular classrooms, yet we’re not training them,” said Heidi Bernhardt, the executive director of the Centre for ADHD Awareness.

Researchers found that young people with neither a mental-health nor a neurodevelopmental disorder, 77 per cent had enrolled in a post-secondary program.

Only 48 per cent of Canadians between 18 and 22 years old who had a diagnosed mental-health condition had enrolled in a post-secondary institution. That includes students diagnosed with emotional, psychological or nervous conditions, but nearly three-quarters of this group were diagnosed with ADHD, which is considered a mental illness.


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