Mar 7, 2019, Kilkenny Now: Kathleen Funchion: ‘Why are autistic children being treated differently in Kilkenny?’ https://kilkennynow.ie/kathleen-funchion-every-child-deserves-an-equal-right-to-education-so-why-are-autistic-children-being-treated-differently-in-kilkenny/ Sinn Fein official asks. Why is there an acute shortage of ASD classes for secondary students in Kilkenny?... Concerned parents have approached me over recent months over their fear that there will be no secondary school places in Kilkenny for their child when the time for them to enrol arrives. This concern is not an arbitrary fear, it is based on parents’ experiences approaching secondary schools in our constituency and being told there is little hope for their child’s admission to a school that provides an ASD class or that the waiting list is full…. …Every school in our constituency needs to acknowledge that diagnostic rates are increasing among our population and we must deliver for that changing demographic…. We are fortunate to be living in a time in Ireland where these diagnoses are happening more readily and gone are the days of simply ignoring a child who appears to be ‘different’….
Children today are noticeably different from previous generations, and the proof is in the news coverage we see every day. This site shows you what’s happening in schools around the world. Children are increasingly disabled and chronically ill, and the education system has to accommodate them. Things we've long associated with autism, like sensory issues, repetitive behaviors, anxiety and lack of social skills, are now problems affecting mainstream students. Blame is predictably placed on bad parenting (otherwise known as trauma from home).
Addressing mental health needs is as important as academics for modern educators. This is an unrecognized disaster. The stories here are about children who can’t learn or behave like children have always been expected to. What childhood has become is a chilling portent for the future of mankind.