Understanding Autism For Dummies
Book image
Explore Book Buy On Amazon

Your child with autism can thrive in school. You may need to be more involved in the educational process of your autistic child than with an unaffected child, but the rewards of that extra investment can really pay off for you and your child.

The following tips can guide you and your child’s teachers to a good educational experience:

  • Insist on specific and measurable goals for your child’s IEP (Individualized Education Program). Involve your child in the process.

  • Develop strong relationships with educational professionals. Keep it friendly, not adversarial.

  • Stay informed about educational laws, your district’s policies, and your child’s progress. Know your options.

  • Visit your child’s classroom to confirm that it’s an effective learning environment. It should have distinct areas for different subjects, comfortable lighting, good ventilation, appropriate noise level, and right-sized furniture, and the teacher should be approachable and fair.

  • Support your child at home by reinforcing what educators are teaching at school. Develop your child’s strengths; don’t just remediate.

  • If possible, get at least 25 hours a week of early intervention before age 3.

About This Article

This article is from the book:

About the book authors:

Stephen M. Shore received a regressive autism diagnosis at age 18 months, became nonverbal, and was deemed “too sick” to be treated on an outpatient basis. Today, he’s finishing a doctoral degree focused on helping people with autism lead fulfilling and productive lives. When not teaching college-level courses in special education and teaching children with autism how to play musical instruments, he consults and presents on autism-related issues internationally. Some topics of particular interest to him include comparative approaches for helping people with autism, education, and disaster preparedness for people with disabilities. He also focuses on challenges faced by adults in terms of self-advocacy, disclosure, post-secondary education, employment, interdependent living, and relationships.
Stephen holds bachelor degrees in music and accounting and information systems from the University of Massachusetts at Amherst. He also holds a masters degree in music education and is on the cusp of finishing his doctorate in education from Boston University. Although he seems to spend most of his time traveling in airplanes (Boeing 747-400 preferred), he resides in Brookline, Massachusetts, with his wife on the rare occasions when he’s home.

Linda G. Rastelli is an award-winning journalist, instructional designer, and author with 20 years of experience in writing and designing instruction for health, education, and business topics. In her career, she has focused on making complex and technical information understandable to the layperson. Although she has covered subjects ranging from financial ratio analysis to educational reform, her most challenging inquiry to date — an undertaking that has made her other projects look like finger painting in comparison — has been autism.
Linda holds a bachelor of arts degree from the University of Delaware and a masters degree from Columbia University. She lives on the New Jersey coast with her husband and her cat, who have reached a blissful state of detente. She hopes to keep her day job.

This article can be found in the category: