Once a child with autism reaches school age, parents ask themselves how to provide the best possible educational program for their child who has special needs. There are a number of options: public education, private school, or homeschooling, but what is the best option? Read on to help choose what might work best for your child.
The big news this past month was the finalizing of the DSM-V which will be published May 2013. There was much discussion around the possibility of Asperger Syndrome no longer being classified as a separate diagnosis. Asperger Syndrome will now be a part of Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD), a new term added to the manual. ASD is a term already used by many experts in the field. The new category will include individuals with severe autism, who often don’t talk or interact, as well as those with milder forms. Catherine Lord, an autism expert at Weill Cornell Medical College in New York who was on the psychiatric group’s autism task force, said anyone who met criteria for Asperger’s in the old manual would be included in the new diagnosis.
The changes to the manual are important for the insurance industry in deciding what treatment to pay for, and for schools to decide how and what to fund for special education. Experts have weighed in on the new changes to the DSM-V. The changes to the DSM-V will continue to be a hot topic once published because assessments and the diagnostic process may change according to the new ASD classification.
Cuts have occurred in education over the past several years in our Alberta public education system. While all children suffer from cutbacks, the ones most affected tend to be the children with special needs. With class sizes growing and classroom resources diminishing, another educational option for the special needs child is available – homeschooling.