The views and aspirations of young people with autism spectrum disorders and their provision in the new Education Health and Care plans in England

Carolina Gaona, Susana Castro, Olympia Palikara

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BACKGROUND: The new special educational needs and disability legislation in England has introduced Education Health and Care plans as statutory documents for children with special educational needs, and has extended provision beyond compulsory education, placing transition in a compelling position. This policy recognises the need to include the views, wishes and aspirations of children and young people in the development of provision to cater for their needs. For young people with autism spectrum disorders and their families, transition to post-16 education and employment could be challenging. This study aimed to explore how voices of young people with autism spectrum disorders are captured in their Education Health and Care plans.
METHODS: These views were collected from the Education Health and Care plans of 12 young people with autism spectrum disorders. These plans were analysed inductively and deductively through content analysis, using the International Classification of Functioning, Disability and Health: Children and Youth Version as a coding framework.
RESULTS: Discrepancies were found between plans concerning the ways in which the voices of young people with ASD were elicited. A total of 189 functioning codes were identified, with a prevalence of activities and participation codes to reflect their views, followed by body functions and lastly environmental factors.
CONCLUSION: These disparities are discussed in light of the biopsychosocial model of functioning and health, and the new English policy. Implications for adopting the International Classification of Functioning framework to give voice to young people with autism spectrum disorders are also discussed.

© 2019, Informa UK Limited. The attached document (embargoed until 06/05/2020) is an author produced version of a paper published in DISABILITY AND REHABILITATION uploaded in accordance with the publisher’s self- archiving policy. The final published version (version of record) is available online at the link. Some minor differences between this version and the final published version may remain. We suggest you refer to the final published version should you wish to cite from it.
Original languageEnglish
JournalDisability and Rehabilitation
Publication statusPublished - 6 May 2019

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