Autism Aid is Available for Your Child

What types of autism aid are available for your child with autism? When your child has been evaluated and diagnosed with an autism spectrum disorder, you may feel inadequate to help your child develop to the fullest extent of his or her ability.

As you begin to look at treatment options and at the types of aid available for a child with a disability, you will find out that there is help for you. It is going to be difficult to learn and remember everything you need to know about the resources that will be most helpful. Write down everything. If you keep a notebook, you will have a foolproof method of recalling information.

Keep a record of the doctors' reports and the evaluation your child has been given so that his or her eligibility for special programs will be documented. Learn everything you can about special programs for your child; the more you know, the more effectively you can advocate.

Special Programs

What special programs are available? For every child eligible for special programs, each state guarantees special education and related services. The Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) is a Federally mandated program that assures a free and appropriate public education for children with diagnosed learning deficits.

Usually children are placed in public schools and the school district funds all necessary related services. These will include, as needed, services provided by a speech therapist, occupational therapist, school psychologist, social worker, school nurse, or aide.

By law, the public schools must prepare and carry out a set of instruction goals, or specific skills, for every child in a special education program. The list of skills is known as the child's Individualized Education Program (IEP).

The IEP is an agreement between the school and the family on the child's goals. When your child's IEP is developed, you will be asked to attend the meeting. There will be several people at this meeting, including a special education teacher, a representative of the public schools who is knowledgeable about the program, other persons invited by the school or by you (bring a relative, a child care provider, or a supportive close friend who knows your child well).

Parents play an important part in creating the program, as they know their child and his or her needs best. Once your child's IEP is developed, a meeting is scheduled once a year to review your child's progress and to make any alterations to reflect his or her changing needs.

Autism Aid: Early Intervention

If your child is under 3 years of age and has special needs, he or she should be eligible for an early intervention program; this program is available in every state. Each state decides which agency will be the lead agency in the early intervention program.

The early intervention services are provided by workers qualified to care for toddlers with disabilities and are usually in the child's home or a place familiar to the child.

The services provided are written into an Individualized Family Service Plan (IFSP) that is reviewed at least once every 6 months. The plan will describe services that will be provided to the child, but will also describe services for parents to help them in daily activities with their child and for siblings to help them adjust to having a brother or sister with ASD.

Find more information regarding various autism aid available in your state.

Autism Aid Resources: Special Programs

Autism Spectrum Disorders - Guidance on Providing Supports and Services to Young Children with Autism Spectrum Disorders and their Families, June 2004

Best Practices for Designing and Delivering Effective Programs for Individuals with Autistic Spectrum Disorders, July 1997

Autism Aid, Supports and Services

What specific autism aid, supports and services are available for a child with autism? There are various types of autism aid available for your child. A few specific types of aid available in New York State are listed here, since each state varies in which services it provides to persons with a developmental disability.

How do you find what types of autism aid is available in your state? The Kaiser Commission provides an online Medicaid Benefits By Service database which can be used to compare autism aid, and Mediciad Benefits By State.

Respite Services are generally funded in full or subsidized by state Home and Community-Based Medicaid Waivers. There are also not-for-profit agencies who are given public donations and grants to provide free or low cost respite services to families of individuals with developmental disabilities.

Contact a local Developmental Disabilities Services Office or DDSO in your state for more specific information on how to obtain autism aid, i.e. Medicaid Waivers, residential placement, family support services, residential and day habilitation, and respite services for your son or daughter.

Transition Planning Transition Planning Your child's school district Special Education Department or Committee is required by both federal and state regulations before age level 14 to begin to help you and your child develop a transition plan from school to life after school -- meeting with you, your child and community agencies to discuss what skills and knowledge your child will need as an adult. Click the link above to view a suggested Transition Timeline, articles and other useful information on planning for the transition from school to work.

Autism Action Plan shares information, tips and ideas which may help you begin to develop a plan of action or autism action plan for your loved one.

For more information on autism aid click here.

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