By Anne Dachel
It always amazes me how, especially in Britain, they talk what’s happening to the health of children, and yet no one is alarmed. (Maybe there is concern over what the costs are getting to be, but that’s it.)
WHY, WHY, WHY
No one is asking, “Why can’t Billy learn like kids have always done?”
“Why are so many students qualifying for special schools and why do so many kids need special ed plans in regular schools?”
“Why is autism a category in itself, to the point where we have to have whole school to provide an education for those affected?”
Instead, as my website shows, the powers that be just stumble on, complaining about costs while adding more and more accommodations for kids who can’t learn normally.
Right now we’re always focused in children/students, but the day will soon arrive where across the population, we’ll have to recognize that people can’t function and they need critical support.
Will we ever wake up?
Here’s another week in the decline of education and childhood worldwide on Loss of Brain trust.
Spokane, WA: A new autism school will open on Jan 4. It’s got space for 20 kids, but there have been “more than 50 applications.”
New Orleans, LA: “In response to a growing population of children with Autism Spectrum Disorder” a service provider is partnering with a local school.
The supervisor is ‘so excited.’
Rothschild, WI: A ribbon cutting ceremony was held for opening of new autism center.
Berlin, CT: The city also cut the ribbon on a new autism center. Ten to 15 families are currently enrolled and more are coming.
Oshkosh, WI: A ribbon-cutting ceremony was held for an early learning autism center.
Beachwood, OH: An autism care clinic just opened. The clinic manager: ‘We are so excited.’
New York: An assemblyman is calling for better autism services. He said there’s been a ‘significant increase in autism.’
Maryland: The governor has appointed the “first statewide autism coordinator.”
The same piece assured us that there’s no real problem with autism.
Researchers suggest that the rise in autism rates may be due to increased awareness around the condition.
Copperas Cove, TX: With deference for autistic students, the district has “created sensory-friendly classrooms in every elementary school.”
They’ve now extended “sensory-friendly” spaces to include the school hallways.
Melbourne, FL: An ABA provider has opened a new center for autistic children.
An MP in Britain has proposed a bill in Parliament for universal screening of all children in primary school for dyslexia.
Sheppey: Plans are in the works for a new special school for 50 students opening for the 2025/2026 school year.
Ipswich: The principal of a new special school is ‘really excited’ about the 60 place academy.
Croydon: A ribbon cutting ceremony was held for the opening of an autism school for 150 students.
Croydon: Maybe the need for the new special school is behind the report that 80% of parents surveyed here made the “damning” claim that special ed services are not preparing students for adulthood.
Suffolk: The local council is seeking more funding for special education.
Dorset: There is a $50M plan to expand special ed services in the county eventually creating 500 new places for disabled students.
Fenland: A local mother has launched a petition to get more special school places for disabled children.
"There are a lot of children with special needs in [town of] March and I can't understand why we haven't got our own special school, or at least a special unit for them - it makes no sense that's why I have launched this petition calling on the education authority to do something about this situation.”
Gwynedd: The local council has added $64K to an area $190K plan to address autism.
Officials call it an ‘exciting’ plan.
A London borough: The new headteacher has been named at a local autism school. She said this is ‘an exciting time.’
Hertfordshire: Despite adding $10M to the special ed budget, it’s not enough.
Hertfordshire County Council has increased investment into SEND funding in mainstream schools across the country from £9.5m [$13M] to £17.5m [$23M] this year.
The Department for Education says it is supporting councils by making £2.6 billion [$3.5B] available over the next three years to deliver new places and improve existing provision for pupils with Special Educational Needs and Disabilities….A local mom with an autistic daughter made it clear that it wasn’t enough.
…there are not enough places, not enough schools and not enough support. "The government should be doing more to support the local authorities, they should provide more funding for their education.
"The council cannot help, there are no spaces at special education schools."… Jen said: "Now, after almost two and a half years of fighting, Ava has a place at Woodfield School for Special Needs in Hemel, but there is a four-year waiting list….
…as there are just no places. There are not enough special schools….
The pressure is on in Hertfordshire.
“The demand for SEND support continues to increase, raising challenges both nationally and here in Hertfordshire. In common with many local authorities, we are experiencing a high demand for specialist provision, with a 37% increase in pupils with Education and Health Care Plans (EHCPs) over the last three years, as well as the additional challenges due to COVID-19….
"Our Special School Place Planning Strategy 2020-23 sets out our commitment and investment to create over 300 new permanent special school places, and the development of a countywide pattern of specialist resource provision in mainstream schools.”
Cheshunt: A nursery and preschool in this London borough has received the National Autistic Society’s Inclusion Award
“This award recognises its commitment to embracing and celebrating that every child is unique. …”
The National Autistic Society has long ignored the autism epidemic among children and regularly reminds the public that the autism affects all age groups the same.
Ireland: We’re told that a mother is “desperate” to get a secondary school place for her autistic son.
Ms Gould said she, and other parents of children with autism in the town, have had to apply to over 20 schools across the county in the hope of securing places for their chlildren next year….
But despite being one of the largest towns in Cork, the two established secondary schools in Ballincollig don’t have dedicated autism units.
Ontario, Canada: The government is trying to do more for autistic students in kindergarten and first grade. Among the facts cited:
In July 2019, the Ontario government increased the Ontario Autism Program (OAP) budget from approximately $300 million to $600 million annually to help ensure the program was both needs-based and sustainable moving forward. …
As the work of implementing this new program was being completed, approximately 40,000 children and youth have been receiving services and supports through an existing OAP behaviour plan, childhood budgets, interim funding, core clinical services, foundational family services and caregiver mediated early years programs.
India: In one city, parents, concerned about the future for their autistic children, have started a residential facility for those affected and their families.
The question for most parents with children with autism or disabilities is “what happens after us,” said Arunasis Adhikari, a parent and one of the persons behind the project.
“The concern for most parents is who will look after their children after their death. We want the responsibility to be taken by fellow parents who have children with autism because they will understand their issues and show empathy,” said Adhikari, also the secretary of a trust that runs a school for children with special needs in the city.
No one seems to ask why autistic young adults can’t go where autistic adults have always gone. Why are they so afraid of the future for our autistic children? What does the absence of adult services currently really tell us?
Anne Dachel is Media Editor for Age of Autism.