Asperger syndrome and bullying: strategies and solutions

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Children and young people who are bullies are often secretive and underhand. When you see your child's class teacher, it may be useful to put forward some suggestions of what you and the school could do to help. Make a map of your child's world and identify the areas where they feel most and least vulnerable. This could include a map of school as well as the route to and from school.

It can then be used to identify areas that the school needs to be aware of. You may find it helpful to use a favourite television programme to illustrate this, such as Mr Bean and The Simpsons. These programmes have over-exaggerated body language and facial expressions, which can be a good teaching tool.

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You could also ask your child to help you sort out pictures and photographs of people into nice and nasty piles. You may also need to teach your child what to do if they are upset by an incident at school, write a social story or a list of rules to follow.

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You could give them a reminder to stick in their school diary, such as a prompt to go and see a certain teacher, or to write a note and leave it in the bully box if an incident takes place. The school playground is one of the places where autistic children and young people can be most vulnerable.

Unlike their peers, who find the playground the most relaxing time of the day, they can often find unstructured periods of time difficult as they are not sure what is expected of them. As a result, they may be alone in unsupervised areas of the playground. For example the school could:.

A buddying or befriending scheme in the playground may also help to reduce bullying. School could identify some buddies for your child in the playground so they can widen their friendship group. Some schools have a friendship bench where children and young people can sit if they need someone to talk to or play with. A circle of friends can teach other children about autism and also helps to teach the person with autism about social skills.

You could ask your child's class teacher to teach other children about autism in a way that is sensitive and does not single out your child. Most schools now teach children about different faiths, disabilities and race. The teacher could plan a lesson that explains autism.

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Add to Wishlist. He stresses the importance of peer intervention, empathetic teachers, and verbal self-defense, and shows how lack of support, condemning of "tale telling," or even blaming the victim reinforces bullying. This may be because they have difficulty understanding the intentions of other and their communication difficulties can make it harder for them to tell you or school staff about an incident. Sign in to Purchase Instantly. Click here to read the IAN report.

Taking part in Schools' Autism Awareness Week is a great way to do this. Schools need to be aware that children with autism don't always want to tell a teacher face-to-face about bullying. A bullying box enables pupils to report incidents of bullying secretly. This also means they have more time to think about what they want to say. School may also be able to get some outside help with putting into action anti-bullying measures.

Dubin, Nick

Your local or education authority may have resources and professionals who can help. It can be helpful to identify a team of people that your child can rely on rather than depending on just one member of staff. Ideally, this team should include staff who are around at different times during the day.

The school should also aim to involve lunchtime support staff and make them aware of the problem and what to do if your child reports an incident. School staff need to be aware of what to do when an incident is reported. Consistency is important to autistic children. If they feel they have not been taken seriously or a staff member has not done what they were supposed to do, they may become more frustrated and upset.

They may also be reluctant to report future incidents if they feel there is little point in doing so. Despite preventative measures, bullying can still happen. It is important that the school take your concerns about bullying seriously and that your child has a point of contact. Any half-hearted measures may make the situation worse.

For example, the school should make it clear to bullies that their actions are not acceptable and their behaviour policy should clearly outline the consequences of bullying. Studies have shown that schools taking a whole school approach to bullying often report a general reduction in bullying. This approach includes:. Your child may require an assessment of their special educational needs in order to get extra help in school. Autistic children and young people find social networking, forums, emailing, instant messaging, texting and online gaming an easier way to socialise.

Asperger Syndrome and Bullying - Strategies and Solutions by Nick Dubi

They can help them build up self-esteem and confidence with positive interactions and can encourage them to interact with others. However, children with autism may not be able to recognise cyberbullying as easily as their peers. As a result, you may not want to monitor their use of the internet or mobile phones.

Be aware of any changes in your child's behaviour. If they suddenly don't seem keen to get onto the computer, then this could mean some bullying has taken place. Here are some suggestions of how you can make things safer:.

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Try making an agreement with your child about how devices must be used. Establish appropriate behaviour online and help your child to identify when they or others are being bullied online. Encourage your child to share any messages that are nasty or upsets them with you. Some parents will be concerned about their child's welfare and would like to keep them off school until the situation has been dealt with. However, you must remember that, legally, you have to make sure your child receives education, normally by sending them to school.

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If you think your child is too unwell because of stress for example, then you should get a medical note from your child's GP or another NHS medical professional with whom they are registered. You should also let the school and local authority or education authority know about this and discuss arrangements for alternative education for your child. If you are not happy with the response you get from the class teacher and you have also talked to the head of year, then talk to the head teacher and board of governors if you live in England, Wales or Northern Ireland.

If necessary you can involve your local authority or education authority or governing body if your child attends an independent school. Bullying behaviour that becomes a criminal act, such as theft, damage to property or physical assault, can be reported to the police.

Managing with Asperger Syndrome

Local Police may also offer or take part in anti-bullying initiatives. Some parents decide to take their child out of school completely and instead send them to another school or home educate them. Our charity's Education Rights Service can provide information, support and advice on education provision and entitlements for autistic children and young people. If you are not happy with the way that school are dealing with a bullying situation then please contact them. Anti-bullying alliance - tools and information, including about cyberbullying and SEN.

ChildLine UK , Tel: ChildLine is a free hour confidential helpline for children and young people. Northern Ireland Anti-Bullying Forum NIABF brings together over 25 regional statutory and voluntary sector organisations, all committed to tackling the bullying of children and young people in schools and communities in Northern Ireland. Respectme Scotland is an anti-bullying service funded by the Scottish Government. Asperger syndrome and bullying strategies and solutions , Nick Dubin, Freaks, geeks and Asperger syndrome , Luke Jackson, A good self-help guide for autistic teenagers with suggestions as to what they and parents can do to help with bullying, as well as other difficulties they may have.

A personal account, written by a woman who has Asperger syndrome, on her experiences of school and how autistic children can be supported in school. We use additional cookies to learn how you use this site and to improve your browsing experience. If you consent, please allow all. More information. Cookies set previously will still exist; learn how to remove existing cookies.

Special Needs Anti-Bullying Toolkit

Bullying is a serious problem for people with Asperger Syndrome (AS), both at school and in the workplace, and displaying "different" behavior, such as not. Bullying is a serious problem for people with Asperger profiles, both at school and in the workplace. Displaying “different” behavior, such as not understanding .

A bullying guide for parents. What is bullying? Bullying and children or young people on the autism spectrum Autistic children and young people can be more at risk of being bullied than their peers because of the different ways they communicate and interact with others. They can also be easy targets in the playground as they sometimes prefer to play alone.

How to tell if your child is being bullied It's not always easy to tell if your child is being bullied and they may not always realise they are being bullied. The effects of bullying on your child and what you can do to help The long-term effects of bullying can be serious.