Autism referrals on the rise

The Ministry of Education is reporting an increase in the number of children with autism who have been referred to the Student Support Services Unit for school placement.

Chief Education Officer Karen Best told those attending a public lecture on autism awareness on Monday at the University of the West Indies School of Graduate Studies and Research, that in the past three years, the ministry received referrals for 80 children with autism or autism-like characteristics. According to her, this represents just over 21 per cent of the total number of referrals for special education.

“This number also represents an almost 300 per cent increase over the number of children with autism referred for school placements, compared to 15 years ago. What these statistics do not capture are those students who are accessing private school and institutions, who don’t come through the ministry. We should therefore expect that the number will be higher during the period identified,” Best said.

She added that the Ministry of Education has responded to this spike by increasing access to specially designed programmes for students along the autism spectrum.

“In 2010, the Irving Wilson School, which prior to that date catered to students who are hearing impaired and visually impaired, began to cater to students on the autism spectrum, and every year since then we have added an additional class.

“One of the peculiarities of students with autism is that they function best in a structured environment. And at the Irving Wilson School, the teachers have a heavy reliance on TEACH – treatment and education of autistic and communication-related handicapped children – providing visual contact to assist children with processing verbal information,” Best said.

She noted that while autistic children possess a wide range of intellectual talents and must be educated in the least restrictive environments, there are some who will be diagnosed as “low-functioning” and will need to be placed in a special school.

The senior education official added that there are autistic students throughout the entire school system and all schools must therefore have the resources to teach them, regardless of where they may be on the autism spectrum.

Best told the audience that the Ministry of Education has also been facilitating the training of teachers, particularly those in special needs schools, as well as primary special education units, in the teaching and learning methodologies for autistic students. One such example is an online programme being offered in partnership with Cleveland State University in the United States.

“In addition, one teacher from every nursery, primary and secondary school on the island has been invited to participate in the online Autism Disorder Spectrum training course for school personnel, facilitated by the New Brunswick Ministry of Education, out of New Brunswick, Canada. This invitation was also extended to our colleagues at Erdiston College. And I can report to you that 97 persons are currently taking part in strengthening their skills through this online training,” she said.

Officers in the Student Services Support Unit in the Ministry of Education are also participating in that course.

Monday’s lecture was delivered by Professor at Century College, Minnesota, USA, Dr Delia Samuel, who is a mother of two autistic boys.

22 Responses to Autism referrals on the rise

  1. Donna Archer Burnett
    Donna Archer Burnett March 16, 2017 at 12:21 pm

    Too much Pepper Pig lol

    Reply
    • Tête La
      Tête La March 16, 2017 at 12:24 pm

      they need to check these children foods, the ingredients, what they mother using while she pregnant

      Reply
  2. Ian Matic Gale
    Ian Matic Gale March 16, 2017 at 3:11 pm

    Allegedly caused by the presence of poisons such as lead, mercury and formaldehyde in the vaccines. Ask Bill Gates.. -_-

    Reply
    • Mark Fenty
      Mark Fenty March 16, 2017 at 3:36 pm

      That is a baseless claim and out of all of the authorities on the issue of Autism, you’re asking us to trust Bill Gates. Don’t you think that your pronouncement is a direct insult to intelligent people? And let us assume that your hypothesis was correct, wouldn’t common-sense dictate to you that every child that has been innoculated would be diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder?

      Reply
    • Samud Ali
      Samud Ali March 16, 2017 at 3:44 pm

      You should do the research. There does seem to be very very strong arguments for a link between vaccines and autism. There is plenty information out there and may shock

      Reply
    • Mark Fenty
      Mark Fenty March 16, 2017 at 3:58 pm

      That is a flawed argument and the doctor who first proposed that theory is now locked behind prison walls in Britain for misleading the medical community Sir.

      Reply
    • Mark Fenty
      Mark Fenty March 16, 2017 at 4:01 pm

      And let me add this while your at it: I have done my research as well as worked with individuals with autism spectrum disorder in the past.

      Reply
    • Mark Fenty
      Mark Fenty March 16, 2017 at 4:06 pm

      A more logical conclusion can be drawn in my judgment from environmental and genetic predispositions!

      Reply
    • Mark Fenty
      Mark Fenty March 16, 2017 at 4:17 pm

      Now I am not saying that we haven’t witnessed and increased of this disorder in recent years, but those who are familiar with the people who suffer with this disorder are cognizant of the fact that it has been around for more than four decades, though not in the numbers that we are witnessing today.

      Reply
    • Ian Matic Gale
      Ian Matic Gale March 16, 2017 at 4:37 pm

      Mark Fenty, I’m not obligated to validate my claim to YOU! There’s enough information and evidence to convince those who have eyes!

      Reply
    • Ian Matic Gale
      Ian Matic Gale March 16, 2017 at 4:40 pm

      1983: A healthy-born child according to the CDC vaccination schedule [2] receives 6 vaccines in the first 15 months of life. The autism rate is 1:10,000.

      2017: A healthy-born child according to the CDC vaccination schedule [3] receives 23 vaccines in the first 15 months of life. The autism rate is 1:68.

      This means in the last 30 years, the prevalence of autism has risen 14,700% [3]. The projected costs for the United States would rise to more than $1 trillion by 2025 [4] if prevalence continues to rise at rates seen over last decade alone.

      http://drbogner.com/vaccine-mechanisms-in-autism/

      Reply
    • Mark Fenty
      Mark Fenty March 16, 2017 at 6:46 pm

      There is no evidence whatsoever which supports your assertion Sir.

      Reply
    • Mark Fenty
      Mark Fenty March 16, 2017 at 6:48 pm

      And you have to ask yourself the question: if there is a consensus in the medical community regarding the fact that the innoculation of children causes autism?

      Reply
    • Mark Fenty
      Mark Fenty March 16, 2017 at 6:51 pm

      And if the CDC has concluded that innoculation of children causes autism, why has it issue a public adversory as it does for diseases which threatening the public health?

      Reply
    • Mark Fenty
      Mark Fenty March 16, 2017 at 6:55 pm

      The fact of the matter is the CDC has conducted research in 2016 which shows that vaccines does not cause autism.

      Reply
    • Mark Fenty
      Mark Fenty March 16, 2017 at 7:01 pm

      I have four kids who have been receiving innoculation for the last 18 years, and not one of them has been diagnosed with autism. So that ought to tell you something sir?

      Reply
    • Mark Fenty
      Mark Fenty March 16, 2017 at 7:15 pm

      Ian Matic Gale, until you can provide me the overwhelming evidence in the medical community to support your hypothesis, then I stand to be convince. Can you point to an expert in the field of behavioural science that has conducted reseach with respect to this disorder that has been well received in the medical community regarding the fact that innoculation causes autism in children?

      Reply
    • Jennifer March 16, 2017 at 8:10 pm

      @Ian M G – Well said, all this people doing is no research and just following in life and also in death. NOT ALL PEOPLE ARE AFFECTED IN THE SAME WAY, CHILDREN WILL SLIP THROUGH NOT HURT. A lot of these children also developing other things such as eczema, Asthma etc. Many people in the EU do not immunize their children for these reasons and they are free. If I was trying to kill people or maimed people I would lock up the threat too. Many people wound up dead for talking things to protect the public too. Guinea pig parade, this is what we are.

      Reply
  3. Samud Ali
    Samud Ali March 16, 2017 at 3:50 pm

    https://youtu.be/DqWhzKewILk

    Reply
  4. Sheron Inniss
    Sheron Inniss March 16, 2017 at 7:10 pm

    Ian Gale I believe these allegations. I have read lots of articles in Readers Digest about autism and what causes it. The information and what parents in the USA had to deal with is scary. Then there were those parents who went to war with government agencies to get the best for their children. Of course I love those stories.

    Reply
    • Mark Fenty
      Mark Fenty March 16, 2017 at 7:37 pm

      Allegations do not amount to proof and if these allegations are true then there is obviously a conspiracy between government and the medical community? And wouldn’t it make more sense if the doctors rather than the parents advocate for the children? And if innoculation causes autism in children, what distinguishes those children that are innoculated and contacts the disorder, and those that do not?

      Reply
  5. Sheron Inniss
    Sheron Inniss March 16, 2017 at 7:44 pm

    Mark Fenty the truth is stranger than fiction.

    Reply

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