Alternate programme to assist children with Autism in mainstream school.
WHY THE STRETCH PROGRAMME?
The STRETCH programme has been implemented at Living Waters Lutheran School to support children in Transition to Year 2, who have autism, to achieve their full potential in a mainstream school setting.
A first for Alice Springs, Living Waters Lutheran School has made a commitment to design and deliver a suitable alternative programme. The school recognises that there is a growing demand for programmes such as the “STRETCH.”
The programme is unique to other programmes in the school. Important social skills will be a major focus; along with developing confidence and independence.
Supporting students with autism
Using the STRETCH programme we will:
- Promote the successful inclusion of students from Transition to Year 2 with autism, into mainstream education
- Provide specific expertise, ideas, strategies and recommendations to mainstream teachers
- Celebrate the successes, embrace the challenges and promote knowledge, understanding and acceptance of autism spectrum disorder. The STRETCH classroom adapts to the developing needs of the individual children enrolled within the programme. It has a dedicated sensory area within the classroom, iPads, individual learning spaces and a secure outdoor area.
Children will accompany their home class to specialist lessons i.e. Music, Creative Arts, Library, Indonesian and P.E.
Catering for a child’s individual needs
The STRETCH programme caters to the individual needs of each child through the development of a student profile and an educational adjustment plan (EAP). This profile will identify the strengths and interests of the child and will be completed with both student and parent input.
The EAP will be informed by specialist reports, information from families, assessments based on social skill development, and academic development.
Work and expectations will be modified. Assessments and reports will be tailored to reflect the child’s EAP.
The following will be explicitly taught:
- Social skills and emotional regulation based on the needs of the individual child.
- Organisational skills.
- The routines of the school day, we will also practice strategies to use when these routines change.
- A dedicated sensory area within the classroom.
- Literacy – the following components all lead to the student having skills to integrate full time into mainstream education:
- Jolly Phonics.
- Guided reading sessions incorporating rotations similar to the home class. Activities will include games.
- Reading Eggs and iPads, teaching the skills for small group and independent work during rotations.
- Explicit handwriting and fine motor programme.
- Share Time.
- Hands on activities. Maths rotations with a mix of small group, individual and technology based skills.
- Use of iPads as well as recorded bookwork in preparation for transitioning back to the mainstream.
- Explicitly teach the inquiry cycle.
- Include all other subject areas of the curriculum.
- Use of the Library and Flexible Learning Centre
1. Phone or email the Principal for enrolment enquiries and a tour of the school.
2. Complete the Enrolment Application form and return to the school with attached documents.
3. Attend an interview held with family members, teacher assigned to the programme, and the Principal.
4. Confirm enrolment and starting date at school for the child.