See our Web Series Workshops page to watch “ABA in Schools” and see the possibilities of gold standard education for fully integrated children with autism in BC. Then, you might want to watch the “Advocacy” video, on the same site, to learn how to get the best school environment for your child. You can also go through the slides for these presentations:
While you have been able to have total control over your child’s ABA program at home, it is quite a different matter in the school system, public or private. Most children with autism will receive support from an Education Assistant (EA), but there is no guarantee that the EA will be dedicated to your child, will be trained in ABA or that the school will allow the consultant to be closely involved in educational training and programming. Autism Funding is reduced at age 6 because it is assumed that the child will get supports in school. However, school supports are often minimal and ineffective due to lack of training in behaviour treatment.
Schools generally do not have teachers, EAs or Special Education teachers who have knowledge or experience in ABA beyond a one or two hour presentation during their training. For this reason it is very important for a Board Certified Behaviour Analyst (BCBA) to be able to determine the skills required for the child to be meaningfully involved in a classroom and to be able to design programs that will facilitate the learning of these skills. A few districts have their own BCBA but if your child has a home program, it’s much better for the home BCBA to work in the school as well. District BCBAs, when available, can be helpful for a child who does not have a home program.
If you feel that your child’s schooling can be improved, it will be up to you to come up with solutions. Watch the ABA in Schools video to understand what those solutions might look like and continue reading to learn about advocating in the schools system.