It’s unconscionable how, despite what we now know about different learning styles and real organic issues that affect the kinds of things you’ve mentioned, that people still label kids as lazy or rebellious when they aren’t functioning up to expectations. The more rigidly hierarchical the environment, the worse this is.
My son has been doing biofeedback/neurofeedback for several months. In his initial EEG it was fascinating to see how all the things that he struggles with were clearly indicated in his brainwave patterns and neural connectivity. Some places there is way too much activity, and those are the places he tends to get overwhelmed or overstimulated. Some places the connections are scant and poor, as in his speech centers (why he’s nonverbal).
I sadly have to agree that I put little faith in the medical establishment at this point (neurofeedback is considered fringe by neurologists even though it’s entirely scientific). It’s failed me too many times. I see doctors as little as possible and will only deal with ones who don’t treat me with an “I know best” attitude but are instead willing to use my expertise on my own body or my child’s as a part of what informs their advice/diagnosis, but they are rare and hard to find.
I think you’ve got the makings of a book with this story.