Here are some suggested organisations that offer expert advice on SN.
t; of inclusion
Very interesting. I agree with a lot of what is said in this article BUT
"...the concept of inclusion, in which children with physical or emotional difficulties are encouraged to be taught in mainstream schools. " Erm, and what about other disabilities???
"These would also have to recognise that special needs might emerge from social deprivation as well as physical disability, she writes" uh oh, again she seems to think that disability is only physical and the social deprivation idea is leaning towards the old refrigerator mother and blaming the parents/family/home.
"..she proposes a system of special schools which could serve a wider variety of needs, including autistic children" It has long been accepted that children with autism should be educated separately from children with other disabilities.
hence the need for, LD and PD schools!
although my dd has both dont know why i am grinning, it is NOT funny really
I didn't like the "social deprivation" comment either. I know it's shallow of me but I also got distracted by that rather unflattering photo too.
Ds1 is doing well in mainstream, apart from the occasional c*ck-up along the way. It's a good thing he is getting on well though because the chances of him getting a place at a special school in this area are almost non-existent. There have been too many closures and mergers.
CT, what additional support does your ds get in m/s? I ask because it worries me that we hear so many reports of AS/ASD children struggling to conform in m/s and the possibility of damage it causes them, yet J (age 6 with AS) seems to be thriving in school and thoroughly loves it. I'm looking out for inspirational stories of AS children who've succeeded in m/s but most of what I hear tells of the failures. It would be interesting to know what your school provides that might be easing his way. Can't remember how old he is either.
Karen - Ds1 is almost 5 and has been in the Reception class since last September. He hasn't needed a statement yet so is on School Action +. He has an LSA who spends a couple of hours each day with him, usually in the mornings. She uses the time to help ds1 reach his IEP targets, eg doing role play and pretend play with him and generally keeping an eye on him. She used to help him with group work but ds1 apparently made it clear that he wanted to do this without help and apparently he does it well.
The biggest help has been that his class teacher is great with him. She has an amazing gift of seeming to know when ds1 is doing something because of his ASD and when he's doing it because he's just being a typical 4yr-old IYKWIM. When the school has made mistakes his teacher does everything she can to put things right. It also helped that there has been a lot of flexibility. Ds1 was allowed to build up his hours at school slowly, even though it meant he only attended part-time for the first 6 weeks or so. There was no pressure put on ds1 to sit through assemblies either - although he surprised us all and sat all the way through his first one.
It also helps that the school has a very good SENCO. She doesn't teach a class of her own so is able to spend a lot of time on SN-related work. The school also has an excellent sensory integration programme that is used by a number of children. Ds1 has been a lot less fidgety since he started SI. Ds1 also has real inclusion IMO. He is included in absolutely everything, including school trips (without me having to attend) and lunchtime clubs. The school isn't sfraid to let him try out new things but at the same time are careful about not making him do anything he is incapable of. Since September there have been only 2 incidents where the school has caused a problem for ds1 (one of those was only today) but these were uintentional and ds1's teacher does everything in her power to put things right.
Oops! This has turned into a mini-essay.
Wow Coppertop, that sounds great! And, of course, your DS is doing his bit
I just had a chat with a mum who has a 4.5 yr old with ASD but he is quite able and verbal. She has come to the harsh realisation that he is not going to manage in mainstream LONG TERM and she has accepted this. But she can't find a special school or unit that will take him as he's not severe enough! What we really need is choice and lots of options and flexibility, but no doubt that would be expensive
KarenThirl - you said you were looking for inspirational stories of AS children who've succeeded in m/s. I don't know if the following is of any help..? Bearing in mind, that although he is AS, he is not severe enough to attend a special school.
My ds who is AS/ADHD was on SA+ almost immediately upon starting m/s school, after being excluded from 2 nurseries. He had a T/A for 2 years along with another ASD boy. The school refused to statement him yet despaired at his violent behaviour and lack of social awareness.
Because of a multitude of reasons including bullying and racism, I eventually removed him and placed him in a much smaller school.
There is now no need for a statement and he absolutely LOVES it. The teachers are very supportive of him and there are other SN children at the school. His behaviour at school has improved immensely because he is happy, he doesn't just get shouted at if he misbehaves, they explain to him what he did wrong and why he shouldn't do it again. They don't do this only with the SN children, but with ALL the pupils.
I could go on, but wanted you to know that m/s (but only a very good m/s school) has been a success for my ds. I dread to think what could have happened had he continued at that awful school.
I haven't had a chance to read all the stuff, but just a note regarding the 'social deprivation' comment. I think this might be a comment on some of the children who have a statement of EBD, rather than children who have ADHD, ASD, dyspraxia, dyslexia etc. I have taught lots of kids with an EBD statement and to be quite honest it is a mini miracle that some of these kids ever made it into school as the came from very dysfubctional families. And it was the family set up that was the main cause of their EBD. Obviously not all EBD children fall into this catogory, but lots do.
Facinated to see that Warnock, the author of @inclusion' has changed her mind.
Coppertop and C8 - thanks for your replies. It sounds as though you are both very lucky with your m/s schools and your kids are doing well. I'm happy to believe that J's school is similarly motivated and want him to stay there if at all possible. We too have a dedicated SENCO and fabulous class teachers - J hasn't needed a statement either because the teachers provide exactly the right level of structure for him so his behaviour is manageable and he causes few real problems in class. Playtimes are a different matter though ...
We have the Autism Liaison Worker going in to observe him tomorrow for the second time, at the request of his class teacher who stressed to her that his main problems were on the yard so would she please come back and see him there. After that she's going to contact me at home to discuss the far more serious behavioural problems we have with him at home, and hopefully point me in the direction of some professional help with that. As you can probably tell, it's been hell on wheels around here lately.
Thanks again, your replies have helped to put my mind at rest about m/s.
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