Take Action

Find out how your school district defines "special needs," who qualifies for services under that definition and what services are provided. Talk with families of students who qualify to determine which current services are working well and where there is room for improvement. Begin a dialogue with all the stakeholders to establish an action plan for how to make needed improvements.

Join with a local or national autism advocacy group to support families of children with autism so they can get the services they need. Also consider brainstorming with stakeholders in various ways (e.g., providing transportation to and from places like the Wae Center) to provide support.

As part of anti-bullying efforts in your school, arrange for a "teach-in" about autism. Help students and faculty understand variations along the spectrum and provide all children with opportunities to "hang out" with kids who have autism. Invite special education teachers and/or siblings of kids with autism to model how to be friends with a child who has autism.

Participate in or help organize observances of World Autism Awareness Day (April 2), National Autism Awareness Month (April) or Autism Pride Week (June 16-22).