Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD)

Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder, or more commonly referred to as ADHD, is a neurobiological disorder that makes it unusually difficult for children to concentrate on tasks, pay attention, or control impulsive behaviors. While some children demonstrate mostly inattentive behaviors and others predominantly hyperactive and impulsive behaviors, the majority of those with ADHD have a combination of both. For children with ADHD, it can often be very difficult to function in the classroom in addition to creating additional stress and conflict at home.


Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD)

Autism spectrum disorders (ASDs) are a group of complex, developmental brain disorders characterized by difficulties in social interaction, verbal and nonverbal communication and repetitive behaviors. People with ASDs handle information in their brain differently than other people.


Bipolar Disorder

There is still much discussion regarding childhood bipolar disorder, also known as pediatric bipolar disorder, as it is very rare in children and can often be hard to diagnose. Onset usually occurs in mid-to-late adolescence, though there are cases in children.   Children with bipolar disorder are afflicted with bouts of major depression and periods of mania—euphoria, poor judgment, and extreme risk-taking activity—in an often debilitating cycle.



Depression is a psychiatric disorder that can effect children and youth with chronic feelings of sadness or worthlessness. For some children, situational depression, or unhappiness triggered by particular life events (death, divorce, injury) is not uncommon in children, but it normally goes away when circumstances change. A child with depression does not recover when events change; sadness, moodiness and/or lack of interest in things she used to enjoy will persist.



Pediatric schizophrenia or childhood Schizophrenia is a serious childhood mental illness characterized by distorted thinking, motor, and emotional processes in children and young adults under the age of 18. Schizophrenia can present symptoms such as auditory and visual hallucinations, strange thoughts or feelings, and abnormal behavior which can greatly impact a child’s ability to function and sustain typical interpersonal relationships.

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Have questions?

Visit our Resources section for more information on how to understand your child’s IEP, how to contact local legislators, or for help with locating a treatment facility in your neighborhood.

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The transition of AB 3632 to AB114

AB 3632 is now AB 144. What does this mean for your child’s IEP? 

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Need Immediate Help?

If you or a loved one is in immediate crisis, please call 911 or visit the nearest emergency room.

The UACF Hope Line is a message system for parents and caregivers that provides resources and connections to individuals in your community that may be able to assist you in finding appropriate support services for your child’s mental health needs. Feel free to leave a message on the UACF Hope Line and your call will be returned as promptly as possible.

Hope Line: 1-877-ASK-UACF (275-8223)