Tag Archives: New Zealand

Five (or Six) Diagnoses, Two Woo-tastic Communities, and an Eight Year Old Under a Pohutukawa Tree

My eight year old is collecting diagnoses like it’s going out of fashion. We’re up to five (with a sixth in contention). He has confirmed diagnoses of autism, dyspraxia, dyslexia, dysgraphia, anxiety, and potentially has ADHD. All these long, scary … Continue reading

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Drowning in Need: Autism and Swimming in New Zealand

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The ability to swim is particularly vital for autistic children, as they are 160 times more likely to drown than other children are. That shocking statistic is a result of many factors, including that about 50% of autistic children wander, … Continue reading

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Understanding the cuts to IDEA autism services * UPDATED *

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This post has been updated, due to important new information being revealed during question time in parliament, on April 6th. There has been a flurry of concerning stories of late, about changes to the autism services, supports, and programmes provided … Continue reading

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What to look for when choosing a school for a child with special needs, in NZ

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One of the most challenging, and most important, decisions we make as parents of young children with special needs, is where to send them to school. I have two children with various special needs. One of my children has been … Continue reading

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We Stand Together, or We Fall Apart

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There is a growing awareness in New Zealand that our education system is not delivering on basic obligations to a significant and vulnerable group of children. This failure of the system affects all of the country’s children: When a child … Continue reading

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Seclude, Exclude, and Excuse.

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What does it take, to justify putting a child in a small, empty, locked, dark “time-out” room in a school, when they’d otherwise be playing with their peers, or learning in the classroom? The answer you’ll get most often, from … Continue reading

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“Education for All” Rally

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You may have noticed your Facebook friends’ profile pictures changing to the “education for all” picture. It should be simply a statement of something we can take for granted in this country – we’re told we have a world-class education … Continue reading

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American Accents Aren’t Disney’s Fault

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In a recent (and I would add “highly irresponsible”) piece of reporting from the New Zealand Herald, we are told that an explanation for children turning up at school with American accents is that children are watching too much Disney … Continue reading

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Funding Teacher Aides

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Who is responsible for funding teacher aides? The Ministry of Education here in New Zealand, claims they provide adequate funding and support for children with special needs, and so parents shouldn’t be paying for teacher aide hours. The schools say they … Continue reading

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New School; Same Ministry.

It was no easy task finding my children a new school. I researched our options carefully, and chose my local top preference. The visit to that potential new school went worse than I could have imagined – the principal told … Continue reading

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