Our Autism Unit
Our Autism Unit first opened on the 1st of September, 1999 with two children, a teacher and a Special Needs Assistant (S.N.A.). It has grown rapidly over the years and now we have three classes – a pre-school class for children from 3-6 yrs, a junior class and a senior class. Each class has a maximum of six children. There are now eighteen children in the unit and a staff of three teachers and seven S.N.A.s.
The first class for children with Autistic Spectrum Disorders (A.S.D.s) was accommodated in the local hall and later in a purpose built pre-fab. Nowadays, the special class accommodation is first rate – comprising of three classrooms – each with a quiet room, toilets, a para-educational room, a central activities area and a multi-sensory room. A soft play-ground has been added at the side of the school with climbing equipment and slides for the children to play at lunch times.
Our school promotes inclusion. We practice reverse integration, where small groups of children from mainstream classes join the children in special classes for certain curriculum activities, and integration, where the children from the special classes join a mainstream class as much as is practicable. All the children play together in the yard with extra supervision by teachers and special needs assistants.