Finding the right education placement
When your autistic child is starting school, you want to make sure they receive the best support. But how do you know which type of school is right for them? The first thing to consider, is whether your child would be best supported in a mainstream or a specialist school.
Every child with special needs in England has the right to attend a mainstream school. The Equality Act 2010 makes it illegal for schools to discriminate against disabled pupils when allocating places. Exceptions are when a school can’t meet a child’s needs, the education of other children would be affected by the placement or if it would be too expensive.
Some children may benefit from support in a specialist school for children with special educational needs. Many of these schools are accessed by children with learning disabilities and/ or physical disabilities. Some specialist schools are designed specifically for the needs of autistic children.
When choosing a school, it’s a good idea to consider important factors such as the environment and layout of the school, group sizes, learning opportunities available and training and experience of staff.
If you feel that a school may not be the right environment for your child, another option may be to educate your child at home.