I Think my Student May
Have AUTISM SPECTRUM DISORDER
Teachers and other school staff have professional knowledge of typical child development and may notice developmental differences in some students which can indicate that a student may have a disability or learning difficulty. No one sign or trait is a sure indicator that a student has Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD). There can be many explanations for difference in behaviour or development of skills. However, there are certainly some key indicators which, if present in a student, would be a good sign that the student would benefit from assessment by a medical professional.
If you suspect that a student may have an Autism Spectrum Disorder, the student’s parents/carers should be notified so that the student can be referred to a doctor or psychologist for assessment.
It is important to follow the policies and guidelines of your school and the Department of Education and Early Childhood Development (DEECD) when communicating your concerns with parents.
Below is a list of some indicators that, if present, would indicate that a student may benefit from a referral for assessment by an allied health or medical professional. This is not a checklist – it is only a guide to inform school staff of some features that may be present. It is extremely unlikely that any student will have all of these attributes, the presence of one or more of these attributes may bear further investigation.
You may notice that your student:
People with ASD can have a high, low or average IQ. Your student may have poorly developed verbal language for their age and avoid unnecessary speech, or be very verbal and enjoy expressing themselves verbally. Commonly students with an ASD tend to have an uneven developmental profile, with some areas above and other areas below what is typical for their age.