.OJ

Grant Thornton

Department of Education and Early Childhood Development, Western Metropolitan Region
P-12 Autism Spectrum Disorder Education Provision Review Proposed Options Paper

August 2011

..Grant Thornton

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WMR P·i2 Autism

Spectrum

Disorder Provision

Review

Contents

Page

Executive Summary Overview of Proposed Recommendations
Short Term

2 4 5 6 6 7 8 8
to providing supports for students with an ASO in mainstream school10 12

Extending ASO Education Provision
Options for Extending ASO Education Provision Proposed Additional Supports for Mainstream and Specialist Schools

Mainstream Provision
Rationale 1. Coordinatedapproach

2. Inclusion Support Programs in mainstream schools ASD Specialist Provision
Rationale

14 14 17 19
21

1. Specialist Provision Streams within Mainstream Schools (Satellite Units) 2. ASO Specific School 3. ASO Specific Streams in 10 Specialist Schools Appendix 1

23

,,

WfIIIR P-12 Autism S pcctrum

Disorder Provision Review

2

Executive Summary

in IFcs(cm Metropolirsn Region (If/AIR), mniastreem, Autism Spectfl1111 Disorder (ASD) spccinlist settings suu! gC11cnli specialist setti11gs ale lI11deJ'increasing pl'cssl/J'e to carer tor (he CIIlTCJJt nnd il1CJ'em;ing number of students with ;111 ASD, and 10 provide fmnilies with ,I choice of educnrion setting» fOJ' (heir children with ASD_
Current and future demand for ASD specific services has been analysed and a ' consultation process undertaken with the community to identify additional supports that would strengthen provision for students with an ASD in WMR.

Grant Thornton was engaged by the Department of Education and Early Childhood Development (DEECD) to review education provision for students with an Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) in years prep to 12 in the Western Metropolitan Region (WMR), This included analysing the current and future demand for ASD specific services in the region and overlaying this with an analysis of the current education service provision and supports, An extensive and independent conununity consultation was also conducted by Grant Thornton to collate feedback from the community to inform the development of options for strengthened specialist education provision in \X1MR.
The number of students with an ASD in WMR is growing.

ASD is the second largest and most rapidly increasing Program for Students with Disabilities (PSD) disability category amongst Victorian student~l, It is estimated that Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) effects one student on average in every 160 students (0,6%) in the 6 to 12 age group-, The W'MR is a major Victorian growth corridor. Correspondingly, the number of students supported under the ASD category of the PSD in WMR has grown by 15% over the past four years3, This has led to an ASD prevalence rate of 0.9% amongst the regional student population. This does not include students with an ASD who are supported under the PSD for an intellectual disability (ID) as the primary disability, nor students with an ASD who do not meet the eligibility criteria of the PSD,
Families in WMR want to be able to choose the most appropriate education setting for their children.

Families with children with ,an ASD in \'{lMR want to be able to choose the most appropriate education setting to cater for the individual needs of their children, across the Autism spectrum". Tills is not a simple task as no two people with an ASD will have exactly the same symptoms or requirements. Of the cohort of students with an ASD, a high proportion of those specifically

I Program for Students wilh a Disability Data 2010 , S, MacDerl)1oH et el., The prevalence of an ASD in AuslTa/ia, Can it be established from existing data?, Australian Advisory Board on Autism Spectrum Disorders, 2006 , Grant Thornton's, P-12 Autism Spectrum Disorder Education Provision Review: Demand and Supply, slides 6,12 4 Grant Thornton's, P-12 Autism Spectrum Disorder Education Provision Review: Community Consultation, slide 4

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Hoadar
3.

diagnosed with an ASD may also have one or multiple co-morbidities i.e. an intellectual disability. This adds to the breadth of diversity amongst students with an ASD.
To better cater for the growing number of students with an ASD in WMR and to provide families with a choice of settings, education provision will need to be extended.

Currently, the DEECD has a range of supports and services in place to meet the diverse and heterogeneous needs of students with an ASD. However, to better cater for the current and increasing numbers of students with an ASD, and to allow families to choose an educational setting they believe is the most appropriate for their child, a number of additional supports may be required.
Both mainstream and specialist provision in WMR need to be considered to maximise

options for students with an ASD, including those who are not eligible for support under the PSD, at primary and secondary levels.

To best cater for students along the entirety of the spectrum both in the PSD and not in the PSD, in primary and secondary school, increasing the capacity of both mainstream and ASD specialist provision will need to be considered. Neither option, taken in isolation, will cater for the increasing demand for services nor meet the expectations of the community. Mainstream provision in WMR can be extended by: • providing a coordinated response in schools to cater for students with an ASD; and • plating Inclusion Support Program (ISP) in schools with higher numbers of students with an ASD to provide additional support. 2 ASD specialist provision in WMR can be extended by either one or a combination following: • establishing ASD specialist streams into mainstream schools; • investing in an ASD specific school; or • increasing the capacity of general specialist schools to cater for students with an ASD. of the

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4

Overview of Proposed Recommendations

The {IJllr;l11gcof education provision need to be considered for \17AiRto maximise provision fOJ' currcntnnd 111081eppropriatc 8ettillg
[urure. [01'

students with an ASD, and to enable Iamilies. to their child.

ciJOO!U'

the

To ensure improved education provision for students in \XlMR with an ASD, increasing the capacity of both mainstream and ASD specialist provision will need to be consider~d. Neither option taken in isolation will cater for the increasing demand for services nor meet the expectations of the community. Education provision should include: • Students diagnosed with an ASD, PSD and non PSD e.g. some students with Asperger's Syndrome • Students with complex needs who are experiencing challenges in mainstream schooling but do not meet the criteria for a specialist school.

ImprovedASD Education Provision In WMR

()
Improved Mainstream Provision inWMR

Mainstream schools in \XJMR require a coordinated

approach to of

catering for students with an ASD. Schools with higher numbers Program.

students may benefit from the added support of an Inclusion Support

, ImprovedASD Spljclalist Provision in WMR
-

Localised primary and secondary ASD provision in LGA's where the majority of students live: Melton, Wyndham and Brimbank.
-

This may

.

..

include specialist streams in mainstream schools across the region, and ASD streams in ID specialist schools.

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Header :

5

Short Term

There are a number of short-term actions that would immediately benefit students with an ASD and their families. These are able to be implemented over the next few months, These include: Publish an initial response to the community consultation process on the 'WMR website and outline next steps Hold regular regional information sessions outlining services, supports and programs available to students with an ASD and their families and publish content on WMR website .Initiate and support networking opportunities for parents of students with an ASD within schools and local networks Reinforce that all schools will accept students with difference and cater for diversity through positive leadership, a whole school approach and by cultivating a positive and accepting


G,
"".,~. -

environment Draft a formal set of regional guidelines outlining how timeout should be used and how usage is to be recorded Review and streamline regional processes where possible for applying for PSD funding.

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6

H&ader

Extending ASD Education Provision

Options for Extending ASD Education

Provision

Educntiou provision [or student» with 1111 SD ill IFJl1R am be extended by ensuring a A coordinated epprosch in meinstreem and through a combinatioo of options [orASD specialist pl·ovisioll. To ensure effective education provision for students in WMR with an ASD, increasing the capacity of both mainstream and ASD specialist provision, and general specialist provision will need to be considered.

To ensure effectivB education provision for students in WMR with an ASD, increasing the capacity of both mainstream ahl:!ASD specialist provision will need 10 be considered.

\

Mainstream schools in WMR would benefit hom a coonlinated approach to catering tor students with an ASD. Schools with hig her numbers of students may be appropriate locations tor the added support of an Inclusion Support Program.

ASD specialist provision can be extended using a number of.d~fererrt approaches. Any proposed sotution should ensure lhal both primary and secondary students have access to top propriate supports based on lhei, needs.

ImprovedASD Education
Provis.lon in WMR

\

ASD

Specialist Provision: Primary
and: Set::ondary

tmproved

Mainstream

Provision

\

Sp.,cllilislP,irviSiOn Sln,a~~
w~hiri"'~I~.IrBa~~IioQIS.·

lnWMR

o

Improved ASO Sp.~iall$t Provision in WM~

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Header

7

Proposed Additional Schools

Supports for Mainstream

and Specialist

In addition, the comnrunitv consultation process identified if l'iwge of Slipports to improve meinstrenm and ASD specialist provision across file regiOl1:
ASD specific training for principals, teachers and teacher's aides:

Training should be at three levels: • Awareness: to ensure all teachers have a basic understanding of ASD and can identify students

in their school who may have an autism spectrum disorder or require assessment a student • Working: to ensure teachers who have students with an ASD in their class can use appropriate teaching and behaviour intervention techniques • Specialist: to ensure specialist educatorsh~ve support their colleagues.
Improve regional application

an expert working knowledge of ASD and can

processes to expedite enrolment decisions:

• Increased transparency for accessing additional resources through the PSD • Increased transparency around how schools use PSD funding.
A clear plan for current and future service provision:

• A regional plan outlining how \X/MR will meet current and future demand for ASD specialist supports and provision • Better advertising of current services to increase the awareness of families as to what is available.

Header

8

Mainstream Provision

Mainstream schools in WMR would benefit from a coordinated Regional plan f01 supporting students with an ASD. Schools with high numbers of students may be appropriate locations for the added support of an Inclusion Support Program or targeted staff training.

Rationale

Meinstream Scl1001~ WMR are under 111Cl'easi11g in pressure to enter for stndeats with all ASD, to meet growi11g demand and to meet families' expectations tbnt their children will be able to access a locaj and inclusive educational setting: The number of students diagnosed with an ASD in WMRhasincreased rapidly. As II large proportion of students with an ASD attend mainstream schools, and many mainstream schools will experience increasing enrolment of students with an ASD. • The number of students with an ASD in W1vIRhas increased from 39P in 2006 to 6855 in 2010, a CAGR of 15%. This is forecasted to grow by 7.1%5,6 by 2015. This will place increased pressu~e on schools to cater for students with an ASD. • In WMR, 63%5 of students currently receiving PSD support for an ASD as the primary disability attend mainstream schools. Whilst the number of students with an ASD in WAS has remained relatively constant, mainstream schools have catered for the majority of growth. This will continue if the capacity of the western regions autism specialist schooling provision remains constant. • Each year, in addition to the students with an ASD already attending a mainstream school, approximately half of students attending WAS currently exit into mainstream schools, the other half into general specialist schools who are reclassified to ID. This will equate to approximately 1107 students over the next 3 to 4 years ..Generally these students have complex needs.

; PSD funded for an AS D as the primary disabilily. This does not include studenls who have an ASD and are PS D funded for an I D as the primary disability or unfunded sjudsnts wilh an ASD. • Grant Thornton's, P·12 Autism Spectrum Disorder Education Provision Revis"!, Demand and Supply, slides 11,12,27 7 Based on WAS's 2010 enrolment figures

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Header

9

Figure 1: Number of Students Supported by School Type ~2006.10)

under the ASO Category of the PSD as the Primary Disability

In WMR

,. Specialist

l

Mainstream

2006

2007

2008

2009

2010

Families want the choice of a localised mainstream education where their child can be socially integrated with their .,eers.

• Families want the choice of sending their child to a local mainstream school that can cater for the learning, social and wellbeing needs of their child, • WMR is a large region, with 75%8,9 students with an ASD living in Melton, Wyndham and Brimbank. Therefore, appropriate educational settings should be local and accessible.
Figure 2: Responses generated through the community eonsuttatlon"

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PSD funded for an ASD as the primary disability. This does not include sluaenls who have an ASD and are PSD funded for an ID as the primary disabilily or unfunded

sluoems with an ASD. , Grant Thornton's, P-12 Autism Speclrum Disorder Education Provision Review: Demand and Supply, slide 22 ,. Grant Thornton's, P-12 Autism Spectrum Disorder Education Provision Review: Community Consultation, slide 4

·

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10

.1. Coordinated

approach

to providing supports for students

with

an ASD in mainstream

schools

The capncitv' ot meiastrcsun schools C;111 be increesedby /lsiJJg a coordumted approacb within schools to cafe!"fin students with all ASD.

Overview of proposed setting: Mainstream schoolsneed the caplldty to cater for all students with an ASD, This includes: P~velopkg a whole schoolapproachtocateringf'()! diversity through positive leadership ~n,dtultivating fl positive a~da!O:ceptip.gehvir0t11llel:ltacross the school Cel1tiallyco6rdinating.servkes thrCiugha lrnowledgdlb)e, dedicatedresourc¢ specific progiatns to suppoitsttlde!1tswithah AS]) Using appropriate teaching strategies and behaviour j1lterventiootecliniques da5sroom~nd adaptingtbe clltricul~n::i.asrequired Acces sing thetlgh teducati()hald~dalliedhe.al~spei#lists r)e~el()pingpositiyepartner$lliP s~lth J~miliesthlo'rtgh· and providing .. inthe of stllderit~ tion

to rne~t-the needs
hvo wafqjmlliut#ea

Specific supports proposed:

1 2

A special needs coordinator nominated in each school, with a defined role, who liaises with staff, families and external support providers ASD training available for teachers and teachers aides with a students with an ASD in their classroom/ school Peer education to increase acceptance of diversity and difference and to reduce bullying Education and networking opportunities for parents and families within schools and networks Strong working partnerships between schools, with outreach services providers i.e. Autism Coaches and community organisations Appropriately planned and well-managed transition programs as students enter or leave the school

j

4

5
6

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General community sentiment:

Many families would choose to send their child to a mainstream school for all the social and developmental benefits of learning with their peers. However, many families believe that mainstream schools are unwilling and incapable of catering appropriately for students with an ASD. Many in the parent and school community believe that the leadership team, teachers and teacher's aides within mainstream schools require additional ASD specific training.
Advantages and disadvantages
y'

of proposed setting:
.Ie

Students with an ASD are able to learn and achieve in an inclusive setting with their peers

Many families believe mainstream schools are currently unwilling or unable to cater for students with an ASD, particularly for those with more complex needs

,/

Increased capacity within mainstream schools would significantly build the capacity of the region to cater for students with an ASD
)C

Schools may find it challenging to provide appropriate supports for' students with an ASD not in the PSD

,/

Settings are local and accessible
x

It may take some time to restore sections of the ASD parent community'S confidence that mainstream schools can appropriately cater for students with an ASD.

Setting profile:

Complexity of cohort: Cost to implement: lime to implement:

Mild
~.,.

Moderate

Severe

'.'·.'f.:~'-:~;:i:.'
Medium

It!

LOw

k

High

1"""'l:~l~J.!H • I'
Medium High
1.:,-

Low

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Header

12

2. Inclusion Support Programs in mainstream schools

Meinstrcam schools with ;I hight'!' number oi stndenrs with ,111 ASD iJ1c1usi011Support Unit to provide additional support to this cohort,

11111)'

benetii

fi"0111

1111

Overview of proposed setting: In addition to the supports oife-redby all mainstream schools, a number of schools with :a high number of students with ilri.ASb; or students who have morecomplexneed may benefit from the ·additionalsupport of an Inclusion Support Progratn /IndusiQusupport coordinator. InclusionSupportPrograms provide students with anAsbwith supported-participation in classes sppportsas with their peers. The c\ir~iculUtnmay be. ad:ip.ted slightly to p.t:()vide~dditionallearoing reqUi.r~dbyi:he individual i.e, s()ci~l (It.. ai1gv~ge ~ sJ41s qa~~¢~, .

..

Sfttdentswith an ASD filay also be provided accesstpadwijonal resources such as a~e:lswhere stpd¢flts feelsecure andean retreat into for additiqnalreassuranceor Inllflgetbeirallxiety .. As Caras po~siblc:, thesestudents would be ~ept ""ith theirpeersand have access toa curriculum that. is adapteci to meet theJiindividual needs. .. . .. .

\VitI~

Specific supports proposed:

In addition to the supports provided in all mainstream schools, Inclusion Support Programs would also have: A teacher who has a specialist level of ASD specific training and who coordinates the Inclusion Support Program 2 3 A range of resources for students with an ASD such as lunchtime dubs and saferooms An appropriate learning environment for students with an ASD, especially for students who attend open plan schools An adaptable and flexible curriculum that enables students to achieve appropriate learning and wellbeing outcomes e.g. practical life and social skills training Increased access to educational and allied health specialists depending on the needs of individual students

4

5

General community sentiment:

• Families of students with an ASD are generally eager to access local, targeted support programs that would enable their children to attend a mainstream school • Not all families will consider a mainstream school appropriate for their children, regardless of the supports provided

;

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Header

13

Advantages and disadvantages
,I

of proposed setting:

Students with an ASD are able to learn and achieve in an inclusive setting with their peers Schools with a high number of students with an ASD or with more complex needs are able to provide appropriate, targeted supports

x

Schools with Inclusion Support Programs mar become 'magnets' for students with an ASD, placing an increased strain on limited resources

./

Schools with an Inclusion Support Program are able to provide support to other schools in their network

./ .Settings are local and accessible

Setting profile:

Complexity of cohort: Cost to implement: Time to implement:

Mild <:=~ Low

===tl~·~::;~~.ti&&~·· ••• F • ~.~ ·1::t:';;;I;l:\~
Medium

Modem!e

Severe

High

r

He adet

14

ASD Specialist Provision

ASD specialist provision can be extended using a number of different approaches. Any proposed
solution should ensure that both primary and secondary students have access to appropriate supports based on their needs.

Rationale

ASD specialist provision iu H7J1fR under incrensiug press lire. to provide families with a is greater ra11geof specialist provision for students with ASD.
37%115 of students supported under the ASD category of the PSD in WMR are currently acceSSing intensive support in a specialist setting as it is the family's preferred setting.

• 37%11 of students with an ASD attend WAS. • Of those students exiting WAS, the proportion of students entering general specialist schools has increased from 22% in 2006 to 43% in 201012. • Based on indicative figures provided by ID specialist schools, it is estimated that over 300 students with an ASD attend ID specialist schools. • Under current entry criteria for general specialist schools, students with an IQ greater than 70 are not eligible to attend these schools. • Some Parents who attended the community consultation believe that their child is not appropriately placed in a mainstream school and as a result home school their child.

1\ PSD funded for an ASD as the primary disability. This does not include sludenls who have an ASD and are PSD lunded lor an ID as the primary disability or unlunded sludents with an ASO. " Granl Thornton's. P·12 Autism Spectrum Disorder Education Provision Review Demand and Supply. slides 11.12, 27

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Header

15

Figure 3: 37% of students with an ASD attend a specialist

setting

120 100

II is d ifflcul! to q uanlity [he number of s ludents access Il1g specialist settinps beyond grade:3 as students must change Iheir PSD funding calegMyfromASDto IDto attend general

80 60
40 20 0 0
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-,

III Specialist

ASD

Some Families want the choice of ASD specialist provision and believe their children's needs are too complex to be best met within a mainstream setting.

• Some Families believe there is a lack of consistency across the state and that \VMR does not have a Prep to12 ASD specific school, whereas other regions do. • Many parents report a perceived lack of choice when their child leaves WAS. They express concern that they will be unable to access appropriate and intensive supports for their child without an ASD specific school. • WMR is a large region, with 75%0,14 of students with an ASD living in Melton, Wyndham and Brimbank. However, these LGAs do not contain a relative proportion of ASD specific or general specialist support services (see figure 4). . • Some Education providers and parents are concerned that extending WAS to become a Prep to 12 ASD specific school will reduce its capacity to provide intensive early intervention and outreach services.

" PS D funded for an ASD as the primary disabiiily. This does not include sludents who have an ASO and are PS D tunded tor an ID as the primary disability or untundsd students with an ASD. " Granl Thornton's, P-12 Autism Speclrum Oisorder Educalion Provision Review: Demand and Supply, slides 22

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Header

16

Figure 4: 75% 135 of students supported Melton and Brimbank. specialist support

under the ASD category ofthe PSD live in the LGAs of Wyndham, of ASD specific or general

However, these LGAs do not contain a relative proportion

services.

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1. Specialist Provision Streams within Mainstream Schools (Satellite Units)

PJ'Ol7diJlg ASD Specialist Streams within nminstrcem primal}' and secondary schools would provide localised, ASD «pecialistprovision. , Overview of propo sedsettirig: Specialistprovision streams within mainstream sc:hools,bIlngtogetherspecialist staff and may be auspiced by an ASI) specific school. They provide.sti,ldentswithcomplex needs, intensive and targeiedsupport with theopportunlty tosociali~ewjth theirpeers~ Depending on the m a del of implementation students may. move b¢tween the tnainsgel\1li clas sto9m~nd. specialist. stream .cla~'s+qo,lns;.This.tnllYinclud~ attendWg~onledllSses. . lunchilin.~." ..., .
. r • ,,' ._ ".'

with

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their

peers; or. s(idalising~th.

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.'

them at

4 strol)g,reciproc~lpartnershipshduldexi~t betwee~ t~e.tnainstreatn and AS]) specialist providers '/ schoolsin theregion. Tllis ~!!angen)ent behdjt~ the prai?stream scho{)lby pro~riding:

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ers,

'lldditibnal andspedalisedsripports'

fbI theirstuderits)VAO have':l1'l.ASD

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Specific supports proposed:

In addition to the supports required in all mainstream schools and Inclusion Support Units, specialist provision streams in mainstream would also have: A strong working partnership between the mainstream and ASD specialist providers / school 2 3 4 5 Facilities within a mainstream school that can be dedicated to the stream Teachers and allied health specialists who have a specialist level of ASD specific training Small class sizes A flexible curriculum that is aligned to VELS and is able to measure a student's progress, whilst also providing training in life and social skills 6 Clearly outlined learning and employment opportunities for students aged 16 to 18 years i.e. VeE, veAL, work experience etc.

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18

General community sentiment:

• \VMR is a large region with 75%,155 of students living in the LGAs of Melton, Wyndham and Brimbank which currently do not have an ASD specific setting. • Many Parents want to be able to choose local and accessible ASD specific settings that can offer their child intensive support. Approximately 50% of students exiting WAS choose to attend an ID specialist educational setting • The majority of families also want to give their children the opportunity to socialise with their peers as much as possible. Specialist streams provide students with this opportunity whilst also providing them with targeted support
Advantages and disadvantages of proposed setting:

./

Specialist provision within mainstream schools will provide local and accessible ASD specialist provision

x

Many schools may be unwilling to have specialist streams Some educators argue that specialist rooms in mainstream schools where students are segregated are not truly an inclusive option

..r

Students have the opportunity to socialise with their peers whilst receiving targeted support Specialist provision within mainstream schools will cater for students with more complex needs including language and behavioural issues x

..r

The effectiveness of specialist provision in a mainstream school is reliant upon . the school principal and the quality of partnership between the mainstream school and the ASD specialist providers / school

Setting profile:

Complexity of cohort: Cost to implement: . Time to implement:

M~d

Low

<

Moderate

\)Imm

<=4

Medium

·.1
Severe Hi9h

'i'/!W:§YMMM!

Low

<·····1

15

PSD funded for an ASD as the primary disability. This does not include students who have an ASD and are PSD lunded for an ID as the primary disability or unfunded studenls with an ASD.

Header

19

2. ASD Specific

School

ASD spcciiic provision

ill

Wil1R could be increased b_l" building' un ASD specific

school

[01

primaJ~' smdr'or secondary studcurs, ()vervi~w of proposed setting: An ASD specific schoolwould students with

an ASD.

be located at a dedicated school campus thatspecificallv

caters for

TPls maycover allorpart

of years prep to 12provision and include:

Extending WAS toinClride

grades

prep to 616 for:

. 13]iildingall addi6onalASDspecif}c:canjpuS
.,.;.. students inir~dt;s 4 t(_)6· students in years 7 to 12

Tllelocation of the Call1pus(es).would need to be carefully chosen to maXifuist; ~ts/thcii accessibilitY for the highest l1umber of students wjw an AS}).

Specific supports proposed:

1 2 3 4 5

Teachers and teacher's aides who have a specialist level of ASD specific training Increased access to allied health specialists including occupational therapists, speech pathologists; behaviour therapists etc. Small class sizes A flexible curriculum that is aligned to VELS and is able to measure a student's progress, whilst also providing training in life and social skills Clearly outlined learning and employment opportunities VCE, VeAL, work experience etc. for students aged 16 to 18 years i.e.

6

facilities and resources to appropriately cater for the needs of students with an ASD Continued research into the most current methods of appropriately supporting students with an ASD

7

General community sentiment:

• Some families are concerned that WMR is one of the few regions without a prep to 12 ASD specific schooL They want the choice of accessing such an option if appropriate for their child • Families want to ensure that students continue to learn and that an ASD specific school would remain accountable for students learning outcomes. They do not want their child to be 'babysat' • Some families believe that their children would be safer and less vulnerable to bullying if separated from students without an ASD

Advantages and disadvantages

of proposed setting:

" This would dec/ease WAS's current capacity for providing early intervention services unless the school was extended.

WMR P-12 Autism Spectrum

Disorder Provision

Review

20

Targeted supports would be available to students with more complex needs without them changing their PSD funding category to access an ID specialist school
-/

An ASD specific school may be seen as the least inclusive setting Students may be required to travel extensivedistances to access the school campus
x

Support would be available for students whose parents do not want them to attend a mainstream school and who are not eligible for a general specialist school The school can provide outreach services to mainstream and ASD specialist streams in mainstream schools across the region

A number of families believe that the current ASD specific school does not have a strong focus on literacy and numeracy i.e. students are not assessed according to VELS Demand for the school may exceed capacity as some parents may withdraw students from mainstream and ID specialist schools to attend

Setting profile:

Complexity of cohort: Cost to implement
TIme to implement:

Mild

Moderate

S;!vere

'.F3!(:'J\j1
Low·

Low

< <

High

II II

Medium

Header

21

3. ASD Specific Streams in ID Specialist Schools

ASD specific streams i11 1D Specintis) Schools 11'111 iucrense the cupncitv oipriIlJilJY and seco1Jdm:vID specialilit schools,
10

carer Ior students with

;111

ASD.

Overview of proposed setting: A high proportion of Students with an ASDaiso hay~ an, intellectual disability. Students

~th an

ASD in general specialist schools mayrequire different teachWgStrlitegies.to their peers. ASD . specific streams within general specialist schools could cater (or students with these dual diagnoses, offering students the necessary environment; supports and services to enable them to achieve their

.' potentia].
Gener~iIy,geheralspecialist schq6P7,18·· schoolSinwMR cater fOl'studel1ts in bothp.i:1marY~ndsecon<lary

Specific supports proposed:

1 2 3 4 5 6

A strong partnership between general specialist schools and an ASD specific school to provide additional supports and expertise Teachers and teacher's aides who have a specialist level of ASD specific training Increased access to allied health specialists A flexible curriculum that is aligned to VELS and is able to measure a student's progress, whilst also providing training in life and social skilis Clearly outlined learning and employment opportunities VCE, VCAL, work experience etc. for students ag~d 16 to 18 years i.e.

Facilities and resources to provide intensive and specialist programs for the needs of students with anASD

General community sentiment:

• Many parents believe that a general ID school is a more inclusive setting than an ASD specific school. Parents want to feel confident that students will receive the necessary support in ID specialist schools. • Some parents do not want their child attending an 1D specialist school due to the stigma attached to being labeled with an 1D.

General specialist schools may need to change their entry criteria to cater lor sludents with an ASD and without an ID il the current ASD specialist school is not . . " Department 01 Health ano Aging, A review of Ihe research 10 identify the. most effective models of praclice in early intervention lor children with autism spectrum disorders, htlp://www.health.gov.au/interneVmainlpublishing.nsffCohlent/mental.child-aulrev-toc-menlal-child-autrev-conl-mental-child-aulrev-cont-def, 2006, accessed June 2011

~~~~

1/

.

Header

22

Advantages and disaidvantages of proposed setting:
,I

An ID specialist s.chool currently exists in most LGAs in W'MR

x

ID specialist schools ·are experienced in
catering for students with complex needs Currently, students must have an ID to attend a general specialist school

/

It is estimated that approximately 70%)1~
of students with autism have an ID. ID specialist streams with ASD 'specific streams can cater for both diagnoses

x

Further up-skilling of teachers and teacher's aides will be required to ensure they have an appropriate level of ASD specific training

,I'

Some members of the community believe that this is a more inclusive setting

Setting profile:
Mild

Complexity of cohort: Cost to implement: Time to implement:

Low

< <I

·,W)i;4l. I ....
Moderate Medium Medium

Severe

21 3 II_ .

II

High

,!~;::;l&f,I!il@'~_
High

Low

I

,._"",".

"PSO funded for an ASD as the primary disabilily. This does not include students who have an ASO a~d are PSO funded for an ID as the primary disability students wilh an ASD.

01

unfunded

Header

23

Appendix 1

Setting Profiles

Each proposed setting has been assigned a setting profile to enable DEECD

to estimate the ease or

difficulty with which each proposed setting could be implemented and the type of cohort each setting is most suitable for. This will aid DEECD to devise an appropriate model of education provision for students with an ASD in WMR. .
Example - Setting profile:

Complexity of cohort: Cost to implement: lime to implement:

Mild

low

<

Moderate

Severe

l:.f,d~'iI.*JlllIll
Medium High

~

·····I·?~,·F.:ilbbMJ

It

Throughout 1

this pack, each setting is rated against three criteria:

Complexity of cohort

This scale indicates the cohort of students who should be appropriately catered for within a particular educational setting. Mild":' Students are high functioning and have a mild to moderate form of ASD. They may require some adjustment to the learning environment and to the curriculum to cater for their individual needs. Moderate - These students have a moderate form of ASD and may have a co-morbidity. The learning environment and curriculum will require some adjustment to cater for the needs of individual students. Severe - These students are low functioning and may have a severe co-morbidity. These students require significant alterations to the learning environment and to the curriculum to cater for their individual needs.

Header

24

2

Cost to implement

• This scale gives an estimate of the cost of introducing or expanding a particular setting to cater for current and future demand. • Low - Additional resources are required in existing settings. No additional funding for schools is required. • Medium - Current settings will require modification to ensure they are able to appropriately cater for students with an ASD. Schools will require some additional funding. • High - Current settings will require significant modification and additional sites may need to be purchased. Significant funding will be required. 3 Time to implement

• This scale gives an indication of the time it may take to introduce or expand a particular setting across \VMR • Low - Settings can implement appropriate supports for students immediately, although some consideration will need to be given as to whether appropriate teacher training is available and the length of time required to complete it. • Medium - Settings will require some time to enable them to plan how to appropriately cater for students with an ASD. This may involve. brokering partnerships between settings and service providers and modifying the physical learning environment. • High - A significant period of time will be required to extensively renovate existing settings or to purchase additional campuses. The curriculum will need to be extensively modified to cater for the cohort of students attending the settings.

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