If you are a parent new to the diagnosis of Autism Spectrum Disorder in your child, be sure to read our article, “Advice for New Parents of Autism” for tips that can help you navigate this journey with your child.
At Hidden Treasures ABA Therapy Services, we want to empower our community members and families facing autism. We get questions every day from concerned parents who want to know what tools exist for them to use when advocating for their loved one. How can they help to empower their child? What groups or organizations exist that can help them become better advocates? This week, we are outlining what we consider to be critical steps that you can take to be an effective advocate for your kid.
Know What Your Child Needs
One of the first steps that you can take to be an advocate for your child with ASD is to know what his/her needs are. Every individual with autism faces different challenges and requires specific treatment for their case of autism. You can work closely with your child’s therapist to understand what those challenges are and what specific method of treatment is ideal for your child. Once you take this step, you can work with your child’s school to make sure that your child’s needs are met. Being able to talk about and express your child’s specific challenges and needs are crucial for being able to be a voice for your child.
Always Be Proactive
It’s sometimes easy to be reactive to situations in life, but when it comes to advocating for your child with autism, you should try to be as proactive as possible. Once you understand the challenges faced by your child with ASD, you can arrange meetings with different caregivers and developmental specialists ahead of time. You can write down the questions and concerns you have, goals you are hoping to set, and strategically navigate meetings on behalf of your child’s well being.
Know Your Rights Within the School
If your child is placed within a school district, you have the ability to advocate for your child and work to ensure that he/she has the best program available. An IEP (Individualized Education Program) is a document that may play an important role in developing programming for your child. An IEP can help to drive your child’s education program and provide important documentation of progress. An important part of ABA Therapy is often the collaboration between the behavioral therapist and your child’s school teacher.
At Hidden Treasures ABA Therapy Services, our team of specialists is here for you. Whether you are seeking information about advocating for your loved one, or you are looking for support and therapy services for your child with ASD, you can contact our team TODAY.