Cutbacks in home support for autistic children could soon start affecting Ontario classrooms, say parents and educators in a growing chorus of criticism about the Ford government’s plan, reports CBC London.
“It doesn’t matter if you say they have choice in therapy, these kids will get zero therapy in this plan,” said Christine Julien, a London, Ont. mother with a nine-year-old son on the autism spectrum.
The Thames Valley School Board’s special education program has been “wonderful,” she says. “I couldn’t ask for a better school. I worry about my son losing what he has now because there’s so much stress on the school system.”
“So many families are receiving less money when they should be receiving more,” said Western University Professor Bill Tucker, a former superintendent of special education at the Thames Valley DSB. “If the money’s not there to provide that therapy in the home then the concern is that the children don’t have that skill set coming into the classroom.”
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