how to choose a school for an autistic childDo you have an autistic child and you are having issues with making the choice of sending him or her to school?

Indeed, when it comes to education, every parent has hopes, dreams and plans for their child.

And every parent of a newly diagnosed autistic child on the spectrum quickly realises those dreams and plans are going to have to be adjusted—in some cases, dramatically!

Here are a few tips to help ease the journey and decision making process.

1.      Consider Child’s Needs

First consider what your child’s needs are now. Do you think (s)he would benefit from homeschooling, formal schooling or a blend of both?

You should discuss this with the team of therapists.

2.      Consider The Kind Of School

Thought should also be put into if the child would attend a mainstream school or a special school.

An adaptive/special school is preferred if the child requires extra support that (s)he may not be able to get in a mainstream school and may make the child feel a little “less different”.

3.      Cost

This very short four-letter word is even the number 1  on the consideration list for some parents and I cannot judge.

And this is simply because having a child on the spectrum is super expensive.

From sensory toys, to therapy to food sensitivities and special diets, to special clothes etc.

4.      Cooperation Of The School

It is important that the school understands the needs of your child with ASD and is willing to support and cooperate with whatever learning needs the child may have.

Here are a few questions to ask the school authorities.

Is the school going to allow the child’s therapist in class?

Have you read: Tips For Raising A Child With Special Needs

Does the school have a no tolerance approach to bullying?

Are there other students in the class with ASD preferably with their own therapists?

Is the class teacher willing and able to help with the child’s IEP should his therapist not be able to show up?

5.      Distance?

Ideally, the child’s school should not be too far from home.

This is because you do not want the journey to and from school to be too demanding on the child’s sensory system causing an overload.

Most importantly, there should be no association of sensory overload or stress with school.

This may cause the child to have an aversion for school.

6.     Listen To Your Instinct

Never ignore your instincts when choosing a school for your child!

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This article was contributed by The Lord’s Spectrum

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