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transition for new school year(21 Posts)
Hi, my DS's (9yo aspie) start to the new school has been disastrous. Went in first day and refused subsequent 2 days. Those 2 sentences give little idea if how difficult the last 2 days have been! The school has handled the transition terribly. Just wondered what transition support has been offered to children with ASD in other schools? Would love to hear examples of good practice. Thanks.
Sorry, meant new school year, not new school. Same school.
DS was sent a 4 page booklet with visuals in explaining the holidays and what would happen when he came back, at the end of last term. It showed pictures of the teachers and his classroom, the other children in his group and other key information.
Bloody hell that's brilliant, compared to DS, who had nothing at all! How old is your son starlight? It wasn't a new school was it, was this just for going up a year? DS went into year 5, and the school have cocked it up royally. And after 2 days of not coming to school they are offering nothing at all in terms of working with us to get him to school in Monday. So your example impresses me.
He was moving from year 1 to year 2, but it was an independent SALT school.
Having said that, it was only a strategy that was well within the ability of any mainstream and would I'm certain, be on the list of recommended strategies for transitions, for children with ASD in any setting.
My ds - moving up to YR1 got the following, mainly initiated by me, but school on happy to comply.
Talking photo album of new class from all angles, new teaching staff
Weekly visits to new class for 8 weeks prior to break
His new TA has been taking over from his old one for 4 weeks prior to break.
Social stories relating to new class
Same/Difference plan - This was my idea, we devised a list of things that will stay the same/change - CT loved it and decided to get the who class to do it
This week has gone well because of this.
These are amazing examples, but they demonstrate just how crap ds's school have been. As far as I know, preparation before the summer break was when his whole class got to spend some time in the new room, BUT after he was there for a 'minute' he was asked to go and do listening skills elsewhere. And... er, that was it. So, back to school on wed and after a colossal meltdown I got him there and he was sat with a boy that it was agreed he should never sit with. Actually they're supposed to sit not even in each other's sight line. But no, they were plonked at the same table. And the boy 'annoyed' him all day (not the boy's fault, he has his own issues). Poor DS is so stressed, with the unfamiliar room, teacher, this boy etc etc. it's now a case of repairing damage really. But the school's head of inclusion is woeful and refuses to engage with any semblance of working with us to help get DS back to school. I asked (begged?)if after school today, he could come down to the school and have a mooch about his classroom to familiarise himself with while it was calm and empty, but we were refused. Apparently everyone would be in a meeting and there wouldn't be anyone- not a single sodding person- who could be available to allow that. They've said he can go in 10 mins early on Monday, but that's not quite the same thing at all! Ever get the feeling that you child is not a priority???!!!
But mine isn't fantastic. It's bog standard. It's good enough and works for ds, but really, it isn't amazing.
would you reckon though that it's pretty unusual to do zilch in terms of transition for a child with autism?
I think it is fairly usual to do zilch, let a child deteriorate and become disruptive and then exclude them or demand that the parents put send them to a special school or a PRU, without having a clue what that entails or what alternative provision there really is.
I had 15 minutes with the new teacher in the last week of term, Dd3 made a new passport for her new teachers.
I was told that she didnt really need transition because yr 5 and 6 work together as a unit with mixed classes so she already knew the system. Then they split the classes because they had too many children and the school is expanding to 2 form entry.
So everything is different
Dd3 has been fab so far bless her but too be fair she has only done 2 days and its usually the second week that she falls apart when the new timetables kick in.
This is a really good school which is normally fantastically inclusive but their transitions are crap. I will be telling the Head and Senco when I see them!!
Good luck and I hope your Ds settles
Thanks ineedmorepatience. I have the weekend to try to motivate DS to go to school on Monday morning. If anyone can point me in the direction of any good social stories that I could use or adapt please do!!
Can you make a communication passport with him? That will help him talk to you about what he wants his teachers to know about him, and give you a headsup on what possible issues there are without the abstract questions such as 'what is upsetting you about school?'
Why exactly is a communication passport? Sound promising.
Just googled it! Sounds a very sensible idea. Will definitely pursue it- thanks starlight. Although getting ds to discuss it might be a challenge!
Dd3 has a communication passport. It tells any adults working with her what she finds difficult and what she is good at. It also tells them who her nominated adults are if she is anxious and where they should go for more information.
Dd3 has learned alot about herself in the last 12 months due to a course called understanding me which she did with the SALT. This knowledge really helped her to write her new passport and it has some great info in it.
We also sent a copy to Cubs so that when she went to Cub camp the leaders had lots of info about her needs.
Of course the one draw back to passports is the adults do actually have to pick them up, read them and absorb the information provided.
Where I work we use one page profiles which contain the same info but are all on one page.
Thanks that sounds so useful. Btw, are her 'nominated adults' teachers/Sencos at her school?
When our son moved up from the Infants into the Juniors he was given a booklet with a picture of the class, teacher, hall.. so that he could look at it and get used to it before going back - not that he ever did!
He's now in year 5 and has since gained a Statement and LSA which has been brilliant. Every year since, he hasn't been given anything extra to bring home ready for the year transition and hasn't been that bothered until this year. He has just gone into Year 5 and was very nervous about his new class and teacher (who incidentally is new to the school).
Definitely something that will be discussed in the coming statement meeting and in the secondary school transition meeting as obviously showing more anxiety as he gets older. The good thing is he was able to verbalise his anxiety and I was able to inform the head who was luckily on the door on the return to school.
One of the nominated adults is the senco who is really the only person who can calm her down if she is really upset, one is a TA who does one to one with a boy in her class and is lovely, the third is an amazing lunchtime supervisor who Dd3 has a really lovely bond with, she has a Dd with autism and has been really well trained
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