Posts Tagged ‘disabilities’

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Ontario to look into school exclusions of children with autism

Thursday, March 14th, 2019

… families with children in many parts of the country who have intellectual and developmental disabilities are increasingly being asked to pick up children early, start their school day later or keep them home for an indefinite period because of behavioural issues… the Ontario Autism Coalition, which advocates for families, have been calling on the government to hold public discussions on possible legislation and policy changes surrounding exclusions of special-needs students with behavioural issues.

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Posted in Education Policy Context | No Comments »


Ford government must fulfill Ontario’s promise to people with disabilities

Wednesday, March 13th, 2019

As it stands, 1.9 million Ontarians with disabilities are receiving the message that “you don’t belong here”… That should be viewed as a violation of both human and civil rights… investing in accessibility is both the right thing to do and also provides social and economic benefits for everyone, including the province’s increasing numbers of seniors… It’s time the government listened and acted.

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Posted in Inclusion Debates | No Comments »


Ontario government announces new supports for schools ahead of change to autism program

Tuesday, March 12th, 2019

… the government will subsidize an additional qualification course for teachers on supporting students with autism, but that won’t happen until the fall. Additionally, Ms. Thompson said she is asking school boards to dedicate a professional activity day for teachers on how to support children with autism… Many of these children currently attend school on a modified schedule, and parents have said cuts in funding will leave them with little choice but to send their children to school more frequently, even full-time… “All that this [announcement] does is it dumps the responsibility for autism therapy onto the schools. Teachers are not therapists.”

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Ford government to boost school funding to deal with influx of students with autism

Tuesday, March 12th, 2019

… school boards had been writing to Thompson, as well as Community and Social Services Minister Lisa MacLeod, with their concerns about how the controversial autism overhaul could create an unsustainable burden on schools as of April 1, when the new program takes effect. A large protest last week drew hundreds of families to Queen’s Park… “This funding will allow school boards to make sure there are proper supports available during the transition from therapy to school.”

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Ontario nowhere near goal of full accessibility by 2025, review finds

Monday, March 11th, 2019

“This is a matter of civil rights, and people with disabilities are being discriminated against on a daily basis in multiple ways,” Onley said… “The message is: you don’t belong here.” … Even the definition of “disability” is problematic, he said, saying AODA’s current language positions disability as a medical issue rather than one of social exclusion.

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Ford government to boost school funding by $12,300 for every child with autism who enters the system

Monday, March 11th, 2019

“These supports will start, absolutely, immediately… We are making changes to school board funding so supports will be in place for this school year.” The government has come under considerable criticism from parents and school boards for the changes, which will see limited lifetime budgets for children with autism, which has led boards to anticipate an influx of students into the system when they lose their current level of therapy… Thompson said by 2021 all teachers in the public system will have training in autism spectrum disorder.

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Children’s agency slams Ford government’s autism funding changes

Wednesday, March 6th, 2019

Kinark is the only regional service provider — so far — to publicly oppose the changes announced by Lisa MacLeod, minister of children, community and social services last month… Under the overhaul, provincial funding will no longer be administered by nine regional service providers and instead flow directly to families who will use the money to buy therapy from private therapists or publicly funded agencies… A new independent agency to be established in the next year will administer “childhood budgets” to families based on household income and a child’s age.

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One solution to the current autism funding crisis

Wednesday, February 27th, 2019

… parent-mediated models have been running since 2016, with regular reporting to the ministry. In many cases, parents and toddlers are making significant gains. While these particular models may not be the solution for all children and families, the resource efficiency of parent-mediated models makes this an appealing approach worthy of further investment and exploration.

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Posted in Child & Family Debates | No Comments »


Some Ontario parents look to Alberta after Ford overhauls autism support

Wednesday, February 27th, 2019

Advocates and parents have reacted with anger to the change, which they say allocates funding based on parents’ income instead of individual children’s needs. Bergeret and her husband started looking at other provinces. She says Alberta stood out because of its needs-based system: children are assessed through a provincial program, which then gives families the choice of how to spend their funding.

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‘Yada yada yada’ isn’t the problem. It’s Ford’s autism policy

Sunday, February 24th, 2019

MacLeod can call this a “fair, equitable and sustainable” system all she wants, but that doesn’t make it a good one. Or a system that provides kids with autism, especially those on the high needs end of the spectrum, access and funding to services they desperately need. But in the face of mounting evidence that this policy is deeply misguided and won’t achieve its stated outcomes, the Ford government has reacted the way it usually does — claiming victory anyway.

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Posted in Governance Debates | No Comments »


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