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Autism friendly Borough in London or near London

(28 Posts)
keenmum Wed 22-Jan-14 12:49:52

Hi Mums and Dads,

I need some help in deciding which borough/LA (London or near London) are Autism friendly?

I currently live in Merton, and thinking of moving to ensure that my child gets best chance for her secondary education.

She is 10 years old, and non-verbal child.


StarlightMcKingsThree Wed 22-Jan-14 13:20:47

TBH you could do better than Merton without a doubt, but sadly nowhere is a 'lot' better. Someone mentioned Southwark to me when I was doing a similar search. Also Epping. Ilford. Westminster is probably the best but I don't know what actual provision they have.

StarlightMcKingsThree Wed 22-Jan-14 13:22:23

Stay away from Surrey, Essex, Hertfordshire, Hammersmith and Fulham and Bexley.

Islington swings from one-side to the other.

AttilaTheMeerkat Wed 22-Jan-14 13:47:16

I presume your DD has a statement in place?.

Would not look at Ilford either (that is also in Essex). My friend has moved to a different area because the secondary schools there are not good.

autumnsmum Wed 22-Jan-14 13:53:40

Waltham Forest are pretty good there is an ofsted outstanding special school with a secondary dept

StarlightMcKingsThree Wed 22-Jan-14 14:07:28

You could look at Feltham Community College. Looks a right dive from the outside but the inclusion and attitude to inclusion within the school is breathtaking. They also have a secondary unit and are building The Rise school in their carpark.

AcrylicPlexiglass Wed 22-Jan-14 14:19:53

Are you thinking of mainstream or a special school? Southwark has some good special school provision at secondary level. and Spa and Highshore are all options, depending on your daughter's needs. If you wanted her in mainstream I'm not so sure it's much write home about.

frizzcat Wed 22-Jan-14 15:02:14

Lambeth are supposed to be good. Lewisham aren't as good but better than a lot of other boroughs I've heard of. Two specialist schools Drumbeat and Brent knoll. Heard good things about both and Drumbeat are an ASD school and have the most resources - both in Forest Hill.

I've heard Kingston upon Thames and out towards Surrey are good but that was a few years ago now.

frizzcat Wed 22-Jan-14 15:02:55

*ASD specialist school - that is

FancyAnOlive Wed 22-Jan-14 17:44:16

Haringey are not great but you can do worse, have heard Enfield are to be avoided. I think Barnet are pretty good though.

TOWIE2014 Wed 22-Jan-14 17:50:30

Although Ilford is in Essex, I think the LA is London Borough of Redbridge? Although I have no idea if it's a reasonable LA

Spherical Wed 22-Jan-14 17:59:42

There is a brand new special needs school that has been built in Brent that may be worth looking into:

salondon Wed 22-Jan-14 18:04:44

Redbridge and Barking & Dagenham both have special schools and schools with asd units. So they are both good that way. Unless you don't like teachh :D

I know tower hamlets and Bromley don't have asd provision so you can expect to get ABA with less struggle.

Teddington has a new asd unit school. Worth checking. And of course the grays

salondon Wed 22-Jan-14 18:05:45

*new ABA unit

keenmum Wed 22-Jan-14 20:47:28

Thanks for your suggestions its much appreciated.
Currently, we are doing lots of home learning on one to one basis (ABA program). I went through the tribunal with Merten to get an ABA provision, unfortunately i was unsuccessful. I want to avoid similar situation for secondary provision.
Can your share your thoughts on your experience for getting an ABA or specialist secondary provision for your child and which borough is likelly to give less hassle.


ProfJamesMoriarty Wed 22-Jan-14 21:03:49

Can you get in touch with the ABA schools and ask them about the boroughs as well. They might be able to point you in the direction of friendly LEAs.

salondon Wed 22-Jan-14 21:28:27

I would say, speak to Fiona.

CantQuiteBelieveIt Wed 22-Jan-14 21:37:34

Avoid Richmond and Kingston if you want ABA! They've done a complete about turn recently.

The ABA unit is positive but doesn't reflect a wider support of ABA and is only for children who will move fast through stages of integration...they aim that all children there will be fully in mainstream by secondary stage. Plus it's completely full at present! With a long waiting list.

I spoke to Fiona re this exact subject a few days ago and she said only Croydon is a relatively safe bet now

ProfJamesMoriarty Wed 22-Jan-14 22:40:50

Wasn't there a video of the twins who were doing ABA and had to stop because the LEA wouldn't fund their program. I think they are from Croydon so I would check first.

salondon Wed 22-Jan-14 22:45:10

I also think expecting a fully funded ABA program, with speech and OT is a hard one to get. In this current climate, compromises need to be made. Fiona said to me that we need to be ready to meet them 1/2 way. Which is fair enoigh

CantQuiteBelieveIt Wed 22-Jan-14 23:00:14

The OP is looking at secondary provision, not a home programme (I assume)

These are very different things, and LAs can easily support one and not the other. In Richmond for example you would probably still win a home programme fairly easily for a pre-school child but asd provision at school is a very different story.

For a non-verbal 10year old who has done some ABA, it is hard to see what suitable support there will be outside of an ABA school (most go up to age 19 now)

I think it's a question of looking at various boroughs and seeing which ones have very little in-borough provision of their own

keenmum Fri 24-Jan-14 06:55:50

Thanks all for great advise!!

Let the search commence smile


tfire Fri 15-Jul-16 19:37:19

Hi mums....I also need some help in deciding the best borough in or near London to move to; in order to get the best autism support for my son. He is four years old and I really need all the help I can get at this stage. Thanks..

milothemonkey Fri 15-Jul-16 21:54:48

Westminster is utterly shit. We have had zero support. The only useful thing was the autism course where I learned how little support others received.

Melawati Sat 16-Jul-16 14:24:12

It's tricky, because attitudes of LAs can change over time. Boroughs that used to be quite good become less so (although it doesn't often seem to happen the other way round!). Wandsworth has good provision but it seems to be mostly children from other boroughs who are placed there.

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