Rise in autism increases calls for awareness

There has been an explosion in autism-related treatment and services for children.

A new report issued by the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) in early April during Autism Awareness Month indicates that one child out of 88 is believed to have autism or a related disorder, prompting autism education advocates to call for better autism services.

Advocacy groups seized on the new number as further evidence that autism research and services should get more attention, especially when tight school budgets often lead to the downsizing or elimination of much-needed special education programs. The increase in the rate is attributed largely to wider screening.

“Autism is now officially becoming an epidemic in the United States,” said Mark Roithmayr, president of Autism Speaks.

The previous estimate was 1 in 110. The new figure is from the latest in a series of studies that have steadily raised the government’s autism estimate. This new number means autism is nearly twice as common as officials said it was only five years ago, and likely affects roughly 1 million U.S. children and teens.

Experts have said that a number of key steps are important in a school-based autism program in order to effectively support students with autism, including individualized assessment, functional curriculum, research-based teaching, low staffing ratios, family involvement, data tracking, and training and supervision.

There has been an explosion in autism-related treatment and services for children. In 1990, Congress added autism as a separate disability category to a federal law that guarantees special education services. School districts have been building up autism-addressing programs since.

Companies have heard educators’ call for help in the form of software and other intervention products that can help them reach more students with autism:

Want to share a great resource? Let us know at submissions@eschoolmedia.com.

Comments are closed.


We’re Celebrating 25 Years with 25 Giveaways!

Enter Each Day to Win the Daily Gift Card Giveaway

and the Grand Prize drawing for an

Apple iPad!

Visit eSchool News each day through April 1, 2023 to enter the daily $25 Gift Card drawing.
Each daily entry counts as one entry for the grand prize drawing. See details and rules.
Giveaway is open only to legal residents of the fifty (50) United States and Canada who are employed full- or part-time in K-12 education.