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Autism resource bases (secondary)

(8 Posts)
badgerparade Sat 03-Nov-12 17:18:26

Has anyone had a positive experience of their child attending ms school with a base?
We were advised that this would be the best option for ds hmm and visited the local school. The unit was nothing like we expected. It was practically deserted with 1 boy sitting there on his own. We were told that the manager had left and it was unknown what the plans were for the unit as the new HT hadn't decided. Apparently all the children were in the mainstream part and when I asked about specialist teachers was told that the TA's were all experienced in dealing with ASD! My ds would need 1 or 2 key workers rather than loads of TA's but I was told that this wasn't possible either.
Have to name a school by the end of the month and am fast losing the will...

alison222 Sat 03-Nov-12 17:38:10

I am currently battling engaging with DS's school over this. In Secondary they seem to have TA's attached to the subject lessons so that they can help in the lessons, rather than to the children. This means that the children need to deal with too many TA's. School are saying it is not possible to limit them and DS has a keyworker, but even the OT said it wasn't appropriate for him at a face to face meeting I was at. I'm not sure where to go from here TBH.

SauvignonBlanche Sat 03-Nov-12 17:43:18

DS has been a such a school for 4 years now.
The children with ASD attend mainstream classes but in a small quiet set with specialist Learning support assistants providing additional support.
The Autism resource base always has a TA there in case the children need a safe place to go.

The best thing for me is that all the teachers have increased autism awareness.

badgerparade Sat 03-Nov-12 17:49:08

Hi again Alison wink - we appear to have much in common.
Sauvignon - that sounds quite good. Here though you have to attend the normal mainstream classes for NC lessons. Ds needs small classes and when questioned the Senco merely said that the lower sets would have less children in them but ds is in the top sets so that wouldn't work.

retiredgoth2 Sat 03-Nov-12 17:53:08

My 15 year old urchin has been at such a base since year 8- he had floundered utterly at a mainstream secondary in year 7..

The experience has been both good and bad. He has been very well supported at a large unit (30 kids)- perhaps too well supported. He is wading through GCSEs currently. And even with a scribe, a separate exam room and 25% extra time he is struggling to get Ds. And his social skills remain dodgy. I should have bitten the bullet and allowed him into special education..

But. That said, these problems are his and mine, not of the unit which is very suitable for slightly less disabled children.

Not all bases are like this, though. I know of one which has 6 students only (in a 1400 pupil school) and a solitary TA for them.. This is only suitable for very mildly Aspergic kids I think.

So. Look. See. And make your judgement..

SauvignonBlanche Sat 03-Nov-12 17:54:07

What are your alternatives, is there an appropriate special school?

badgerparade Sat 03-Nov-12 18:08:08

Don't think there's anything else suitable in county. All the ASD schools are for lower functioning children and ds is able to take GCSE's so needs to access NC lessons. As he has quite a rare condition there is also no real expertise in the county either so this is another issue to contend with. Have seen a couple of specialist schools out of county that look like they could be a good fit for ds but of course they are very expensive. We were initially advised that he would need mainstream, then we were told a base would be best so we will now be saying to them that we cannot find anywhere suitable. In reality they know it will be hard to place him anywhere and we are not going to set him up to fail any more so will see what develops I guess.

SauvignonBlanche Sat 03-Nov-12 18:22:51

Have you contacted your local NAS branch or Parent partnership group? They may be able to give you advice or put you in touch with parents using the school.

In response to your request for positive experiences, DS takes his GCSES next year and is predicted to do very well.

Good luck!

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