Here some suggested organisations that offer expert advice on SN.
Reception - Sept 2014(15 Posts)
Need some direction with regards to schooling. My daughter is 3y8m. Non-verbal, classic case of Austism. She gets ABA at home. While I am getting a statement in place, should I also start looking at schools(she starts in Sept 2014). I am very open to having her in her current day care for another year.
I am told that if a child goes to ASD units, then ABA and its funding are quite difficult to get. Is it too early to start looking for schools and if not, what should I be looking for?
Hello my dd is starting reception in 2014 and she is attending a nursery attached to a school specialising in autism from September. I was told she would have to attend the nursery to get a place at the school
if you want to stick with ABA then you would probably be right to look at mainstream+ABA (unless there is an ABA school near you) with ABA as the necessary step to access mainstream (DS has this and still goes part-time to school in year 1 as part of an ABA programme).
Its not unheard of for ABA support / training to be allowed into special schools that do not themselves use the ABA method, but pretty rare. Most special schools would find ABA a threat to its own methods and LAs would worry about the floodgates argument of one child getting extra input leading to others asking for similar. They would like to present their own SS as being able to meet all needs without external help.
What to look for is a tactical decision - we chose a school with little autism knowledge (our other children were also there), this had the advantage of making it easier to hang onto ABA as it was obvious the school could not meet need without it and the school did not want to lose it
(and have to teach DS themselves)
However that has proved to have its own frustrations as when we have asked school to contribute they have not wanted to step up at all!
On the other hand if we had chosen a local school with a better reputation for SEN and more experience of autism then we would quickly have run into the argument the school had plenty of experience and did not need ABA input, there were other children with autism there that did not have ABA, and ABA would have been pulled by the LA fairly quickly.
Not all schools will be open to ABA. Some think they are experts (usually the ones who think a visual timetable and a workstation is a cure).
I would also be looking for a school who are happy for your child to attend part-time with the rest of their education 'otherwise than at school'.
While the class teachers are driving me mad with how lazy and useless they are I would rather DS be in a school with ABA support where we rely very little on the school for his education (and can make up the shortfall in 1:1 / at home), than in a school that knows a bit more about autism but without ABA. Most of his teaching even at age 6.5 comes from his ABA staff. He learns best in 1:1, he can manage small groups, but large group learning is still a real challenge. If all his education were large group he would be learning very little.
Mainstream schools generally don't have a clue about the moderate to severe end of the spectrum.
If however you have an ABA school etc near you I would look at that as our situation is restrictive in terms of DS still being part-time and having to ferry him around between placements every day and not being able to work.
Agnes - is your child verbal? The set up you have for your child is what I would like to have for my daughter. I am pretty certain that for the foreseeable future she will need a 1:1 and any education she gets will be at home or during 1:1 sessions. School will only be for peer interaction.
And yes, I am hoping that the current ABA will help her communicate and prepare for some sort of mainstream education.
Our local school actually has no autism experience (based on what the lea EP said to me), which I think is ideal for ABA.
Thanks for your input everyone. I guess a trip to the local infants is due.
Just checking - are you Redbridge? Because the primary school applications were due in January and it might be difficult to get a place at your preferred school, even with the support of an EP and a statement. We considered keeping Mogling in the nursery class for another year, but in the end decided that the Reception class was sufficiently flexible to accomodate her needs along with the other children. Our closest school is quite accomodating, as they have a unit for hearing impaired children, so a dedicated inclusivity team onsite (a bit caring carrot but they do mean well). There are a few in Redbridge which have special units of this kind (there's one for speech delayed children near us too, but we decided the travel was going to be impractical while DS is still a tiddler).
MummytoMog - No I am not in Redbridge. But nearby. I know the applications were due in Jan.. But she doesnt start this year, she starts in Sept 2014
Yes he is verbal but very delayed with language. The peers have been good asset. He's still not at all interested in them but some are very interested in him and persist with him. Also it's been good for teaching observational learning now if cannot understand what to do he will watch the other children and copy. I can't see him going full time for a long while the school don't have much to offer him and he needs the balance of 1:1 to keep progress going. Full time would deprive him of too much learning time and be detrimental. But parttime school has benefits.
Thanks Agnes.. Was he verbal & potty trained when he started recepion?Those two are my biggest concerns
Ooops, sorry, was thinking about reception year as you mentioned keeping your DD in daycare for another year. Are you going straight to Year 1 then?
DD was non-potty trained and non-verbal when she started at the school nursery and I found it extremely frustrating that they wouldn't let us send her in nappies for the first term when she was basically incontinent. It didn't help. In fact the only thing that helped with potty training was her being ready for it, not watching the other kids and not having at least one if not two accidents each day.
We tried sending DD's pecs book in with her, but she got very frustrated when the other children messed about with it, and so we kept it at home after that. DD learns pretty well by copying and hand over hand, so they did that to explain the bits of the day she didn't understand and she often has a one to one with her which also helps.
Oh - I am being daft, is she not an august baby? DD is end of august, so starts reception in 2013, but is yours a bit later? DD did not get her mad number skillz from me obviously.
Yes both but hardly spoke at school. Needed supervision in toilet (bum wiping and so didn't bolt). We didn't crack toilet training until 4.5. When we looked round schools we didn't expect him to be out of nappies and it wasn't a problem they all said they would find somewhere to change him. He only went three half days to start. Now goes six.
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