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After school care for DS - ASD

(7 Posts)
Flook76 Sat 01-Mar-14 08:30:28

Hello (again, I periodically appear here and the advice is always invaluable. Thank you in advance...)

DS is 5 and is high functioning ASD.

Within the classroom setting, where the rules are clear, he's doing well. He doesn't have an IEP as the school doesn't think it's necessary. His teacher (also SENCO) is amazing and handles him perfectly.
However, out of this setting (where teacher does not see) he is really struggling.
He was going to a (relatively new) childminder after school for the 3 days I work, who unfortunately gave her notice in last week as she feels unable to cope with DS as he is being extremely aggressive and antagonistic towards the other (all older) children in her care.
I then contacted the previous after school club as an emergency measure to see if they could help short term, but they have said that just before I took him out last time (because I needed a bit longer cover as they finish a bit too early for me to get there after work) they were going to contact me to say they could no longer have him as he needed 1-2-1 attention to stop him hurting the other children, which they cannot offer.
They have said they will help short term.

What on earth do I do now? I feel with no other option I may have to give up my job (shorter / different hours are not an option).

DS of course needs to come first.

But whereas school are saying he's fine, they can manage him, this is not the case out if the classroom.

Where do I go for help / support in this kind of scenario? (We don't have a statement or anything).

DS is so Jekyll and Hyde. He can be utterly charming but then in the wrong setting (which I appreciate the after school care must have been for him - unstructured and crowded) so very different.

I think I just need to find the right person don't I? Maybe someone who will look after him 1-2-1 in his own house?

He's had a childminder since he was 1 who still has him in the holidays (she lives too far away from school / no car / other children to have him after school unfortunately) so I know in the right situation he can thrive (although needs constant direction to stop him being 'bored' and getting into trouble).

Where do I find such a person? Or perhaps I need to accept I have tried now with no success and its time to put DS first (I enjoy my job and my salary is decent so to give this up would be sad. It also gives me a much needed head break).

Any suggestions would be greatfully received.

Redoubtable Sat 01-Mar-14 12:52:06

I know exactly where you are coming from as I struggle with this for DS.

I have had him refused by one childminder as he was aggressive toward other children.
With another, he constantly hit one of his sisters, who was also going there.

I had a marvellous childminder who 'got' him but has since retired. She looked after only 4 children and DS loved her. Even at that, there were behaviours that she said she had never seen any child do before.

What worked for me was:
- DS now older and copes better
- he has a 'heavy work' schedule of activities as soon as he leaves school (when he doesnt do it, he will have a bad evening)
- lots and lots of written schedules....he has one in his school bag which I did which covers leaving school and getting to his minder....one for his 'exercises' which he knows happen before snack/homework/tv/play....and one for the afternoon up to the point where I collect him
- he also has one for the car home to transition to home and evening routine

I change these regularly, but he helps me to type them up so that he knows the changes coming.

Flook76 Sat 01-Mar-14 15:16:49

Thanks Redoubtable

Those all sound like excellent ideas. I know it will (hopefully) get a bit easier as he gets older (and can read properly for example).

It always feels a bit of an upward struggle and that I'm shouting into an abyss at times!

Redoubtable Sat 01-Mar-14 19:02:23

You dont need a reader for visual schedules to work...in fact the whole point is that they are not language bassed.

Draw a picture, take a photo, find an image online....what ever conveys to him the next task,

Kleinzeit Sat 01-Mar-14 21:46:48

flowers This isn’t an easy one! I had to give up work for a while when DS started school. We did eventually set him up with a supported place in an after-school care club – it turned out there was some council funding for a 1-2-1 for him. But it took a year to set it up (!) and they only had space for two afternoons each week. I don’t think he would have coped with more to be honest, he found school very exhausting and he needed time peaceful at home to calm down. I eventually went back to work half time.

Another thing to look into would be a part-time nanny / au pair at home after school. I didn’t try this myself because it's expensive and there isn’t an obvious route for finding the right person, but I do know a few other parents have done this successfully. Some kids with ASCs find calm one-to-one time with an adult in the background a lot less stressful than time with other kids.

AgnesDiPesto Sat 01-Mar-14 22:48:57

Ask social care to assess you as a carer and your child as a disabled child so you can get help to stay in your job. The LA has a legal duty under the Childcare Act to ensure there is childcare for all. Can you ask the childminder and after school club to put in a letter he needs 1:1 which you can show to social worker (disabled children's team)?

If you get assessed as needing support then you can ask for direct payments so you can choose the person and could employ someone yourself at home or a 1:1 to go to after school club.

Contact a Family has good leaflets about social care assessments.

The LA must give you an assessment but often try and wriggle out of providing any services so you need to be pushy.

Perhaps also asking the school to provide some 1:1 so he can have some time out of the classroom so he isn't that wound up by the end of the day? Schools often forget break times are work for children with ASD not a break so building in some quiet downtime during the day can help.

Are you sure school are not telling you its all fine so they don't have to fund any 1:1. It seems surprising he is completely ok with no 1:1 at playtimes etc

Flook76 Sun 02-Mar-14 09:03:47

Thank you everyone

Great idea about visual schedules (doh moment, of course that would work for him!)

Got a meeting at the school next week with SENCO and also the people from after school club (the other problem with this is that they just finish a bit too early for me to get there).

I do think the nanny idea would work. If DS has undivided attention he in a quiet environment he is at his best.

Ok I feel more empowered now to battle on!

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