A teacher who helps preside over a program for students with autism, Carrie Jones knows full well some aspects the general public might not understand.
First and foremost is the uniqueness of each child.
“If you have met one child with autism, then you have only met one child with autism,” Jones said.
Jones is a teacher at Clawson Public Schools in suburban Detroit, which, for 17 years has had a program specifically designed and dedicated for students with autism.
In addition to the uniqueness of each child, Jones said there are other points about teaching autistic students that many don’t know about.
For example, she said:
- Their abilities outweigh any disabilities.
- Competence is presumed with the students.
- Most students with autism do not have a cognitive impairment.
- Students with autism are students first.
The program has classes for autistic students at an elementary school, a middle school and at Clawson High School, where Jones teaches.