Autism & Asperger's Syndrome Expert Forum
school denying access/hirschsprung's
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school denying access/hirschsprung's

My son has down syndrome, hirschsprung's and autism.  We vistied the junior he will be attending next year and the special ed dept. chair is trying to deny access for my son to have a free public education, due to him not having control of his bm's
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In the US, your child does have a right to public education, despite behavioral difficulties or skill deficits.  However, if a school is unable to provide adequate services for a student, then they are obliged to refer you to another service provider who is better able to serve your child. It is difficult to provide specific advice without further details on your problem, but I would recommend that you speak to an educational advocate for further information on your child’s rights and how to best help him.
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It would be helpful to know what country you are posting from.
In the UK there are three types of state school: mainstream, mixed (mainstream and special needs); and special needs.  Then there are independent and private schools.
You would be best advised to speak with a national organisation for Downs Syndrome and Autism in your country to find out what the educational rights of your child are.  You could also get advise from a solicitor who specialises in special needs educational law.
Having said that, you need a school that has experience and expertise in the conditions your child has.  I tried to keep my son (with autism) in a mainstream only school for over 3 years waiting for them to train up and understand his needs.  It didn't work because they just weren't interested.  It was three years of him losing skills, becoming anti-school and my general and mental health deteriorating because of the school's lack of even the most basic understanding of how to meet the needs of a child on the autistic spectrum.  And my son is high functioning autistic!
He now goes to an Enhanced School which is a mixture of mainstream children and special needs in each class.  All the staff have training and experience of autism, and it works.  And I know definately at that school there are children with autism who are still in diapers and who are in mainstream class.
If the school is being so negative about your child then that might not be the right environment for your child.  And although you may have the 'law' on your side and could fight to keep him there and for them to meet his needs, are they really experienced enough to know how to educate him?  In my experience the answer is usually no.
You would be better advised to focus on finding a school that has the best facilities and experience to meet his needs so that he makes better progress.
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Jason C Bourret, Ph.D., BCBA-DBlank
The New England Center for Children
Southborough, MA
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