MAINSTREAM SCHOOLING IS FAILING OUR AUTISTIC CHILDRENS EDUCATION RIGHTS
Unfortunately our children's experiences of poor education opportunities and experiences are many, however we have consolidated some of these concerns into six specific points that we wish to draw attention to and these are as follows:
1) EXCLUSION- Both formal and informal, the later being illegal, autistic children and young people are often excluded from school and/or activities such as pantos, PE, assemblies, outings, lunch times, extra curriculum activities even in the classroom itself and given no appropriate alternative. This does not promote inclusion, but creates ASD children/young people and their parents to feel isolation and exclusion and further more promotes a divide between the ASD child and their neurotypical peers.
2)DIFFERENTIATED CURRICULUM- There is a phrase "If the child cannot learn the way we teach, we must teach the way they learn". There appears to be little or no evidence of an appropriate differentiated curriculum being used for ASD children in mainstream. Children are often given activities that are not suited to their development/functioning aptitude or ability and are often left doing odd jobs around the school, cleaning offices or taking messages to other classes.
3)LACK OF STAFF- Human resources are a huge issue in mainstream, there is simply not enough staff to attend and support ASD children in mainstream. Many parents have reported that their child is being supervised by another student, this is not adequate or a suitable education. IN 2012 ASN TEACHER NUMBERS WERE 260 AND ARE NOW REDUCED TO 220 IN GLASGOW, PSA NUMBERS ARE ALSO DRASTICALLY CUT, BEING 4 PSA'S FOR 7 CLASSES ON AVERAGE.
4) LACK OF KNOWLEDGE/EMPATHY- Most schools are involved in some sort of autism training, in most cases this is a day course which is extremely basic and in no way prepares a class teacher for the task of educating or empathising with 1 ASD pupil let alone 2-3 per class. It is very clear that many staff are not equipped to support, have the resources or knowledge and skill set to teach many children on the spectrum. Parents experience the school staff then becoming fatigued and empathy slipping because of this. Staff on outreach for the children with Speech and Language needs are only getting 90minutes of support a fortnight not exclusively being with that child but instead teaching all the mainstream class.
5) EFFECTIVE ONGOING TRANSITION- There is currently no specific guidelines to support some aspects of transition for children/young people with ASD particularly those children moving from LCR units to mainstream. Children and parents experiences are largely reliant on the understanding and patience of the professionals involved in their child's transitions. Many cases are rushed, unhappy and unsuccessful.
6) BULLYING- RECORDING AND REPORTING OF.....
The rapid increase in parents reporting faults in the procedures is amongst the highest reported to us. Even when parents are making head teachers aware of severe bullying, it is not being treated with any regard. If anything the child or young person being bullied is often made to feel at fault for this happening by staff.
All of the above is having detrimental effects on our children putting their mental health at serious risk, most of them self harming, threatening to kill themselves and running away as they are taken to school each day.
Please continue to sign and share this petition on behalf of all of our children and young people as they not only deserve better now within education but in the years to come.
We as PACT will stand up on your behalf and be a voice should you wish us to do so for your children and young people as they are entitled to much more than what they are currently receiving as an education at present within Glasgow area.
PLEASE FEEL FREE TO SHARE THIS PETITION ON BEHALF OF ALL OF OUR CHILDREN.
THANK YOU X
FACEBOOK LINK- https://www.facebook.com/PACT-FOR-Autism-1616668038594728/