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***(UK) 100% increase in expulsions for 'behavioural problems' since 2011

Jan 24, 2019, Yahoo UK News: Too many children with autism are let down by schools and end up in prison https://uk.news.yahoo.com/too-many-children-autism-being-161125937.html?guccounter=1 For many young people, school can be a difficult place. And for some, it can be just about impossible. Negative experiences in school can have harmful long-term effects on pupils with autism spectrum conditions. Official figures show that children, are increasingly being suspended or expelled from school because of “behavioural problems” – many of which include children on the autism spectrum. Some regions in the UK have experienced a 100% increase in these types of exclusions since 2011. So despite policy rhetoric on “inclusive education” – where children ought to be educated in mainstream schools – recent figures show school exclusions are increasing: from 6,685 pupils to 7,720 between 2015-2016 and 2016-2017. In my current research I interviewed mothers of adult children with autism and other social, emotional and mental health problems. They told me how their young sons had been a challenge in school. And how despite their requests for help, their sons received little support and ended up in the criminal justice system. Estimates suggest that 30% of prisoners have a learning difficulty or disability and 60% have problems with communication – though this is arguably a conservative estimate, as many inmates choose to hide their disabling condition. … Mothers in my research talked to me about how their sons were “different”. They were violent to other children and teachers as well as their own families. All the mothers told me they felt something was “not quite right” with their child. And because the support was not forthcoming at school, this negative behaviour escalated and then as these boys got older, they ended up in prison. … Udele, explained how she had received a call from the headmistress, to fetch her son after he assaulted a teacher. “I went, you’d better call the police then. He was 10”. Failed by the system But a lack of support was not just isolated to the families. One senior teacher who works in a “special school” explained how hard it is to help. She said that the combination of puberty and autism can make things very difficult: … Rethinking learning If more support and intervention in the education system was to occur before the police got involved, then these young people would be less likely to end up incarcerated and at the bottom of a human hierarchy. But for this to happen, there needs to be a rethink of what education is actually about. Because it is clear that the restrictive and damaging nature of the current system just doesn’t work for some pupils. …