Autism – Early Intervention
Early Intensive Intervention Program for K and PP students with autism
Our Early Intensive Intervention Program caters Kindy and Pre-Primary students with autism. This specialised program is funded as a targeted initiative by the Department of Education. The program has been running for over 15 years, with a 95% success rate of students transitioning to fulltime attendance with their local primary school, in Year One. Our expert team who have been involved in intensive and ongoing training and professional development to enhance skills and knowledge in this area.
Evidence-based research has repeatedly confirmed that Early Childhood (when the brain is very plastic) is the very best time to introduce and reinforce concepts of emotional regulation, attention and learning for all students. To maximise a child’s success, emerging skills are practised and then reinforced in many less structured situations (generalised) e. g. group activities in class and at home. Parent understanding of the principals of the program is therefore essential for success. We encourage potential parents to visit and watch the program in action to see if it is what they want for their child.
The Learning Program
The main focuses of our program (besides basic academic skills) are:
- Social skills
Our evidence-based practice uses an intensive, highly structured teaching program which teaches skills sequentially and in a clear, consistent manner. Skills are broken down into simple segments, guided by the child’s learning pattern and current level of functioning, and are then chained together. This ensures success at each level, progressing to independent, generalised learning. Positive reinforcement is a key component of our program. Visual systems are utilised to scaffold learning. There is also an emphasis placed on consistent intervention, generalisation of skills, and developing flexibility in the students.
In addition to the one-on-one sessions, group work sessions are scheduled throughout the day, including language, fine motor, physical education and mat time sessions. We also share our lunch and play breaks with the Pre-Primary students from the mainstream school, to build on our students’ social and physical skills in the outdoor environment.
We can accommodate up to six students in each Kindy and Pre-Primary class. Students are initially assessed using a Baseline of Skills, and individual targeted programs are subsequently developed. This approach allows students to progress at their own speed, ensuring the objectives are relevant to them. The program is focussed on both behavioural and academic objectives.
The overall aim of the Program is to provide students with a successful integration pathway into fulltime mainstream in Year One and beyond.