Most parents feel a sense of anxiety, uncertainty, and frustration about helping their children with autism transition. For caregivers of children with autism, a multitude of undetected and mixed emotions evolve into feelings of fear about the future. This fear stirs a sea of daunting questions that causes parents to feel like they are drowning in doubt.
- “Will my child be able to manage without me?”
- “Will she be able to drive?”
- “Will he be able to work?”
These are just a few questions parents of children with autism wrestle with daily while navigating through life’s unexpected lane changes. According to the Autism Consortium, caregivers are most helpful maneuvering their children to self-supervision by seeking answers to optimistic questions. The Autism Consortium encourages parents to ask questions like, “What makes my child happy,” and “What are his strengths?” “What obstacle does she have and what skills are needed to face them?”
These questions serve as headlamps to a brighter and more hopeful future. The journey to successfully transitioning to independent living is not an uncharted road map. Many parents have experienced success with creative thinking because all children with autism have different personalities and circumstances.
Avoid navigating the journey alone – help is available.
The Autism Academy for Education and Development is engaging students and families with strategies to navigate from A-to-Z. The school’s mission includes equipping children with autism the necessary components to achieve academically and socially with strong character values. There are many pieces to the puzzle that start with enrollment and continue throughout a transition. Currently, transition specialist Karen Durst is targeting 11th and 12th graders for college and workforce preparation.
“Parents know their kids better than anyone else,” she said. “That’s why we’re working with campus disability coordinators, teachers, and parents.
The Autism Academy owner Laura Newcomb has invested four years strategically assembling a passionate team of teachers and support staff to allow the children with autism to grow accordingly. Together, the Tempe, Gilbert, and Peoria campuses are providing resources, information, and services needed throughout the autism community. The Autism Academy is a huge piece of hope in a complicated puzzle with many pieces.
This series of 2016 Autism Academy Reader-Focused-Writing blogs will help bridge families together within the support of the autism community. The blog will also inform, celebrate, raise awareness, and serve as a literary source to a never-growing puzzle. The Autism Academy is helping students and families navigate successfully by turning help into a strong sense of undying hope.