Access and inclusion for children with autistic spectrum disorders: 'let me in'

HESMONDHALGH, Matthew and BREAKEY, Christine
Based on their pioneering work at the King Ecgbert School, the authors explore the issues of access and inclusion in employment and education for children and young people with Autistic Spectrum Disorders (ASD). They describe the challenges they faced in establishing and running an Integrated Resource for children with ASD, within a mainstream secondary school. The 28 pupils at The Resource participate in the regular school curriculum, but also learn a wide range of additional life skills. These include road safety, work-place skills and using public transport as well as expressing feelings, making choices and learning from experience. The innovative Post 16 provision of The Resource arranges work placements for its older pupils with employers such as Sainsbury's and Norwich Union and these projects reveal the encouraging possibilities within employment for young people with ASD. Throughout, the authors make useful practical suggestions for access and inclusion, showing how people with ASD can participate more fully in the world of work and the community.

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