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Our Focus: Learning, Leadership, Community A Practical Guide to Surviving High School for Students on the Autism Spectrum OCDSB ASD Team A Practical Guide.

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Presentation on theme: "Our Focus: Learning, Leadership, Community A Practical Guide to Surviving High School for Students on the Autism Spectrum OCDSB ASD Team A Practical Guide."— Presentation transcript:

1 Our Focus: Learning, Leadership, Community A Practical Guide to Surviving High School for Students on the Autism Spectrum OCDSB ASD Team A Practical Guide to Surviving High School for Students on the Autism Spectrum OCDSB ASD Team

2 Our Focus: Learning, Leadership, Community Agenda ASD Team and resources available Understanding the diagnosis and changes to the DSM-V Transitions Practical Guide to support students in high school Questions and Answer period

3 Our Focus: Learning, Leadership, Community ASD Team Autism Initiative Coordinator for the OCDSB - Dr. June Pimm Case managers -Leanne Forrest -Linda Burner-Martin -Lori Fraser -Heather Swafford -Pam Wilson - Emma Findlay (ELT)

4 Our Focus: Learning, Leadership, Community ASD Team Learning Support Consultant – Colleen Richards Itinerant Teacher – Julia Sneyd Social worker – Nanci Burns Speech and Language Pathologists -Michelle McIsaac, Lindsay Campbell

5 Our Focus: Learning, Leadership, Community ASD Referral Case manager - receives referral on Tuesdays at Clinical Initial meeting - meet with school team and determine goal Observation – in the classroom/alternate days Action plan – create and share with school team Referral to other members of the ASD team for: Social Communication Strategies- IEP/Programming Support - PD

6 Our Focus: Learning, Leadership, Community Reason for Referral in High School Student not performing to his or her academic level Strategies to reduce disruptive behaviours Strategies to reduce anxiety Student not attending regularly Placement options for students

7 Our Focus: Learning, Leadership, Community What We Can Offer Assist school team with the creation of a behaviour supports or Safety Plan Support the development of the IEP and Transition Plan Provide consultation for social communication programming Transition support pre, during and post high school Meet with school team and parents when necessary Professional Development

8 Our Focus: Learning, Leadership, Community Resources Effective Educational Practices for Students with Autism Spectrum Disorders, Ministry of Education ASD Lending Library Autism Folder – Special Education Conference (Beam) Augmentative Lending Library – Board Office Directory of Services For Families With ASD Children

9 Our Focus: Learning, Leadership, Community Understanding the Diagnosis

10 Our Focus: Learning, Leadership, Community Diagnosis is based on the DSM-IV Triad of Autism Three Major Areas of Dysfunction: 1.Social Interaction: appear indifferent to people 2.Social Communication: (verbal and nonverbal); trouble reading faces, gestures and tone of voice 3.Limited Range of Mental Activities

11 Our Focus: Learning, Leadership, Community Pervasive Developmental Disorder - Not Otherwise Specified (PDD - NOS) PDD-NOS, also referred to as “atypical autism”, includes individuals who do not fit into the other categories because they do not meet all of the diagnostic criteria for a specific disorder; this is often the third criterion - limited range of activities as some students may show no specific interests at all.

12 Our Focus: Learning, Leadership, Community Asperger’s Disorder According to the DSM-IV, Asperger’s students have Impaired social interaction A limited field of interest and activities Restricted, repetitive patterns of behaviour No significant delay in language acquisition, cognitive development, acquisition of age- appropriate learning skills, or adaptive behaviours

13 Our Focus: Learning, Leadership, Community Prevalence of ASD Incidence of Autism is one of the fastest growing developmental disabilities Initially thought to be rare (4.5 in 10,000), until recently calculated as 1 in 88. US figures estimate more than 1.77 million This translates to more than 72,000 Ontarians

14 Our Focus: Learning, Leadership, Community Intellectual Functioning Approximately 70% of Autistic children are developmentally delayed (Fombonne, 2005) Recent evidence has suggested that the prevalence is closer to 50%, but these samples have included Asperger’s (Edelson, 2006) It is important to take this information into consideration when transitioning ASD students into school Intellectual Functioning

15 Our Focus: Learning, Leadership, Community If a psychological report designates a child at the 1 st percentile or below this can be interpreted more meaningfully in the following way: When a child scores at the 50 th percentile, he is expected to function consistent with his chronological age, whereas a child at the 1 st percentile would only be capable of achieving a little over half of his chronological age Translated into age, a five year old child functioning at the 1 st percentile would be capable of achieving approximately at the two ½ year old level Intellectual Functioning

16 Our Focus: Learning, Leadership, Community Approximately 10% of children with ASD demonstrate “splinter skills” which can be stronger than those of the typically developing child These “splinter skills” are “islets” and not necessarily indicative of the child’s overall level of functioning It is important to remember to look at the entire range of skills when writing the IEP. (Klin et al, 2005) Intellectual Functioning

17 Our Focus: Learning, Leadership, Community Changes to the DSM-V Asperger’s Disorder and PDD-NOS will be subsumed under Autism Disorder. Criteria have been changed to emphasize two characteristics - repetitive behavior and social/communication skills. Examples of behaviors will be included. Severity of symptoms will need to be noted. Older children can now be diagnosed. Only 60% of currently diagnosed would fit new criteria. However, children will not lose their diagnosis.

18 Our Focus: Learning, Leadership, Community Asperger’s in the Classroom and Workplace Difficulties in meaningful verbal communication. Difficulties in social interaction Difficulties in abstract thinking and generalization of information. High levels of anxiety

19 Our Focus: Learning, Leadership, Community Some Strengths of ASD Students Thinking in a visual way; may be precise and detail oriented especially pertaining to special interests Understanding and following concrete rules Following routines; can often be depended upon to maintain schedules and be on time Understanding concrete concepts and factual information; strong rote memory

20 Our Focus: Learning, Leadership, Community Excessive Strengths May result in: Perfectionist tendencies; trouble starting or finishing a task Rule bound “policing role” Difficulty with transitions Negative thinking patterns

21 Our Focus: Learning, Leadership, Community May experience anxiety and stress due to challenges in the following areas: Executive Functioning -time management/organizational skills Theory of Mind - social understanding and communication Self Regulation - anxiety Challenges of ASD Students

22 Our Focus: Learning, Leadership, Community Deficits with executive functioning may present as: Disorganized or Perfectionism Non-compliance (difficulty with “moving on”) Difficulties with task execution (shifting from one task to another) Lack of awareness (the ability to respond to cues about space, time objects and people) unable to anticipate the outcome or self monitor behaviour Lack of situational awareness (“reading the room”) Prompt dependency (adults have always provided executive control) Difficulties with self control (self regulation) Executive Functioning

23 Our Focus: Learning, Leadership, Community Self-regulation Self-regulation Deficits with self-regulation may be present as: Anger, frustration or feeling overwhelmed Need for routine and predictability Unexpected behaviour

24 Our Focus: Learning, Leadership, Community Theory of Mind Deficits with theory of mind may be present as: Difficulty functioning in social situations and forming friendships (Hidden Curriculum) Appearing non-compliant, rude, or oppositional Social naiveté and vulnerability to bullying

25 Our Focus: Learning, Leadership, Community

26 Understanding the “Hidden Curriculum” Refers to the unwritten rules of social conduct: If you hear yourself (or others) saying: I shouldn’t have to tell you… Everyone knows that... It’s obvious…… There may be a need for teaching the hidden curriculum.

27 Our Focus: Learning, Leadership, Community

28 Transitions

29 ASD Transitions Intake Grade to Grade Elementary to Middle School Middle School to High school “As per the Policy Program Memoranda PPM140”

30 Our Focus: Learning, Leadership, Community Plan for the Transition Meet with sending school, parents and service providers Allow more time during IPRC or alternate meeting Prepare transition materials - about your school

31 Our Focus: Learning, Leadership, Community Prepare for the Transition Observe the student in his/her current setting Plan school visit to high school – June/August Prepare transition materials – school, staff, resources and supports Share student information with staff – June/August

32 Our Focus: Learning, Leadership, Community Support the Transition Develop Transition Plan/IEP Observe and track transition Maintain team communication -staff /student/parents

33 Our Focus: Learning, Leadership, Community Evaluate the Transition Evaluate student success and further required supports Re evaluate plan or supports if necessary – semester to semester Plan for next year and beyond …

34 Our Focus: Learning, Leadership, Community Practical Guide For ASD Students What students may need: Transition Support What you can do to help: Provide or encourage the use of visual tools- (bus schedules, map of school, class schedule, watches/ timers Access to required materials (text books, pencil case, etc.) in each class may be necessary Allow for early/later transitions between classes or beginning/end of day

35 Our Focus: Learning, Leadership, Community Practical Guide For ASD Students What students may need: Safe Person Safe Place Peer Support What you can do to help: Provide a mentor or staff member to help support initial transition to school Create a supportive timetable that includes non credited resource period or lunch hour options Access to Link Crew, peer tutoring, to volunteers (Algonquin, CO-OP), a person with similar interests

36 Our Focus: Learning, Leadership, Community Practical Guide For ASD Students What students may need: Organizational & Time Management Supports What you can do to help: Resource period each semester Accommodations and modifications Checklists, task cards, work plan of assignments Extra time for processing Preferred seating Access to technology Binder system

37 Our Focus: Learning, Leadership, Community Practical Guide For ASD Students What students may need: Communication What you can do to help: Check in with student regularly (travel card, 5 point scale, CPS) Communicate with parents (home – school communication) Teach, promote and recognize self advocacy (break card)

38 Our Focus: Learning, Leadership, Community Practical Guide For ASD Students What students may need: Social Supports What you can do to help: May require further social skills support Generalization of previous acquired skills taught Foster positive peer interactions

39 Our Focus: Learning, Leadership, Community Absence of supports may lead to; Disruptive behaviour Social misunderstandings (stalking, bullying, police involvement) Anxiety School refusal

40 Our Focus: Learning, Leadership, Community Questions and Answers


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