What is an Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD)?

An Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) is generally accepted as being a lifelong developmental disorder which can have a variable impact on people’s lives. It affects communication, socialisation and flexibility of thinking and behaviour. It involves a different way of processing information and of seeing the world. (Jordan 1999 in HMIE 2005).

Heightened sensitivities to some:

  • sounds
  • smells
  • touch
  • taste
  • visual stimulation may also feature

ASDs occur across all intellectual abilities, nationalities and cultures, but are more common in boys than girls. The level of difficulty experienced may range from subtle problems of understanding and limited social skills to severe learning and complex communication difficulties.

ASDs can occur alone but may co-exist with other conditions such as Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD), Dyspraxia, Dyslexia, Anxiety Disorder, Epilepsy etc.


What support is available within Fife?

Fife Council's Education and Learning Directorate support children and young people with autism spectrum disorders in mainstream schools, in Departments of Additional Support Needs and in Special Schools.  Which school your child attends will depend on their own needs.

Pupils with autism can be supported in school via a range of strategies eg:

  • Use of ICT
  • Support from a Pupil Support Assistant
  • Individualised learning approaches

More information about autism can be found at the undernoted websites:

National Autistic Society

Autism Help

Autism Independent UK

If you are concerned that your child has autism or you are concerned about the support they are receiving please contact the headteacher of your child's school in the first instance.

If you require further information please contact us.





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