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Student and teacher

Choosing an education path

Every child with autism is different and has different educational needs. 

Some children need a specialist setting to reach their full potential, however, the majority of autistic children should be able to thrive in mainstream schools with the right support. For this to happen, it's crucial that pupils' individual needs are identified, and then a school is found that meets those needs.

Even without an autism diagnosis, pupils may be granted extra support in school through special educational needs (SEN) support. For those who need a higher level of support, an Education, Health and Care (EHC) plan may be needed and an assessment will determine what level of specialist provision they require. Most children in special schools have a EHC plan in place.


Further information on different types of schools

Read the Department for Education types of schools on their website or Independent Parental Special Education Advice (IPSEA) choosing a school or college.

The Autism Education Trust has also produced a useful guide to choosing a school, including handy templates and checklists.