How to Talk to Your Child’s Teachers About Autism

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Talking to anyone about your autistic child can be frustrating. You feel like no one gets it and, unfortunately, you’re probably right. When people see your child screaming in the supermarket or wonder why he or she doesn’t ever look people in the eye, they make you feel like your child is defective and that just makes you angry. If your autistic child has trouble talking to people at school or doesn’t play well with the other children, the teachers may tell you that your child is causing trouble or not developing correctly. You know that this isn’t true and giving them information packets isn’t always enough to help them understand. A conversation may be necessary and it might be one that you dread having.

Prepare Yourself Well

Remember, when preparing to have the conversation about autism with your child’s teachers, that you are not defending your child. Autism is not something that you need to be sorry for and your child’s teachers do not need an apology for your child’s behavior, even if they may be expecting one.

  • Be the proud mother that you are! While it is important to remain professional and polite, that doesn’t mean that you can’t show pride for your child’s progress in school. Note this progress and be prepared to bring it up during your discussion.
  • Research autism awareness rallies in your area and inform your child’s teachers about events happening in the near future. Perhaps meeting other autistic children and their parents will help them to better understand what you’re trying to tell them about your child’s behavior.
  • Arm yourself with information about special education at your child’s school. If he or she is falling behind, having some time with a tutor or taking some extra time to teach your child concepts that are difficult may help him or her to feel better about class time.

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