A 12-year-old boy with ADHD was left sobbing after his teacher awarded him a 'most likely to be distracted' certificate with a picture of a zombie on it.
Derek Cooper attends Plainfield Central School in Connecticut and according to his mother, Tera, he was welling up with embarrassment after being given the award in front of his entire class.
The certificate, titled '#ADDAward', read: 'Most likely to be distracted by... Look something shiny!' and it was accompanied by a picture of a zombie being hoisted in the air by balloons.
Mrs Cooper hopes to take legal action against the Connecticut school.
In an interview with NBC Connecticut, she said:
He had tears in his eyes. He's embarrassed because he had to accept it in front of his entire class.
Mrs Cooper admitted she never met Derek's teacher, but despite this she and the school would have been aware of Derek's condition due to a plan that could allow for changes to his current education programme.
The education plan strictly forbids any discrimination against people with disabilities.
Clearly vexed, Derek's mum added 'I don’t know if she thought it was funny but it’s not funny' and went on to say that other students had received 'ADD awards' too.
The school's principle, Scott Gagnon, told parents that the matter would be dealt with promptly:
Parents were assured that, along with our central office administration, this matter would be handled promptly as we are acting on good faith in the interest of the student and his family."
ADHD, which stands for 'attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder' is a mental illness which greatly impacts an individuals focus and the way you act.