Today, the day after the international Autism Awareness Day, Sweden all makes us proud of living in a country which cares about its citizens, or? Or do readers of Swedish Metro wake up to feeling ashamed and disgusted over the state our country is in? My feelings this morning when I opened page 8 of said newspaper, made me distraught and so angry I wanted to drive in to BUP and throw the newspaper in their faces. Because this is the problem I spoke about. Fine, label my child with Autism, but what will come out of it? You labeled my one son with ADHD, five years ago and he does not get any of the help, that the law proclaims that he is entitled to. Because just like lawyers can find loopholes in the law for criminals, the headmasters of all schools can find loopholes in order not to have to spend money, they don’t want to spend. Labeling more and more children with neurological disabilities has its consequences. The children will cost more. They will require tax funds and when the politicians refuse to allot those funds for this purpose, you have a BIG dilemma. BUP lives in the pink clouds called a dream world, why the rest of us live down in reality and realize that their institution is pointless. You might as well stop testing children for letter combinations and autism because there are no money to do anything about the test results!
The article that has me ranting is the following. (I am sorry if I translate it poorly in to English, but for all people who do not have Swedish language skills nor the Swedish Metro, hear this): Articles written by Jenny Sköld 3 April 2014 “Autistic Sigge was supposed to get used to the situation in the regular school. Autism. To be put in a regular school, turned out catastrophic for 11-year-old Sigge Holm. Since he received his diagnosis, his mother Malin Holm, has had to fight ignorance and lack of resources, but she still feels lucky. ‘At least he has not been traumatized like many others.’ To be in a regular class-room can be a nightmare for a child with autism. But since the new school law came in to effect in 2011, autistic children with normal intelligence are supposed to attend a regular school. If any support is going to be given, it has to be within this school system. But this solution was catastrophic for Malin Holm and her son Sigge, 11 years old. ‘They hope that these children will get used to it eventually. But a child with Autism, who is hyper sensitive to sound, light and smells, do not get used to it. Autism doesn’t disappear. He ended up sitting all alone in a reading clinic, every day, without any contact with other children. But I have been lucky. He had a really good teacher in the reading class and it has not been traumatizing for him to go to the regular school. He has not been bullied nor abandoned. For many children, this is the case though. A large number of the children who remain at home and do not attend school anymore, are autistic.’ Today, Sigge has a place in a resource school.
‘ They are fantastic. They understand these children, they set apart resources and match the groups as best they can. Sigge takes the national tests just like everybody else and only makes a couple of mistakes. When he attends a regular class, he becomes an abnormality, but here he can function like everybody else.’ Since the new school law went in to effect, resources have been cut down. The school is being closed down and do not accept any new children, but Malin and Sigge, hope that it will be allowed to continue. ‘I don’t know what will happen from day-to-day. It’s driving me crazy not to know.’
Jenny Sköld continued with a second article: “Many remain at home. At least one of 38 teenagers, in Stockholm, has the diagnosis Autism. Ten years ago it was just one in a thousandth, in the same age group. The increase in children and youths diagnosed with autism, can clearly be seen at Habilitation in Stockholm, which gives support to those who receive the diagnosis. The group which is increasing the most, is the one without mental retardation, which has increased 117% since 2007. ‘They have the most difficult time since they are expected to handle the usual demands in regular school, which is not adapted at all, to their needs. There is too much people, too strong lighting and too much noise. Many remain at home, because they get panic in school’ says operations manager Annika Brar. The county of Stockholm has spent a lot of money on investigating and diagnosing persons with Autism. But when the time comes to follow up and support these persons in their daily life, there are no more funds. ‘Of course it will be expensive if 2,6% of all young people in Stockholm are Autistic. But if we don’t do anything now, it will cost society even more in the future, when these people end up outside the job market’, says Annika Brar. ”
This is where the articles end. I can see where this is going. My son who has just received his diagnosis, will not get any help what so ever. We have received our first and second appointment to Habilitation, the 14 April and 15 May. I have an inclination to just tell T. to go to work as usual. We can not afford him loosing his job, to go and listen to empty promises of how good “Gubby’s” future will be. It is not going to be good at all. He is more than likely going to end up at a school which is doing nothing for children with Autism. I have already lost all hope. It is five days since I wrote to the Autism school in our neighbour village and asked them to contact me. I told them that I would like to know more and come and visit. No answer. T. wrote them a new e-mail Monday morning and no answer. He tried to phone them all day as well. No answer. In other words they don’t want any new students. I read on their homepage that they now have 14 students and that is all they have room for. No more children can start in the autumn of 2014. I assume that there will not be a place for him when he is supposed to start zero-class, in 2015. But they could at least have had the courtesy to answer our mails and tell us this to our faces. I can not say that their behaviour has given me a positive view of their school or a good impression. If they do not have time to answer mails and phone calls, you are clearly understaffed. And have a bad attitude.
The woman who previously worked at his pre-school (back when “Kitty” was there), as a substitute for a woman on maternity leave, whom we ran in to last term at the supermarket, did tell us just what the article is all about. The council school here in the village doing nothing at all to adapt things for her Autistic child. He can not even be guaranteed to only have 29 fellow students in the classroom, but for some lessons, he has to sit with 49 other pupils. 50 students in a classroom at primary school! Think of the noise level. Who is learning in that room? It’s outright criminal and the idiotic politicians sitting in Stockholm wondering why Swedish pupils are becoming the most stupid in the world, should perhaps visit the school during one of these 50 pupils lessons! The woman is so furious at the headmaster not wanting to spend a single “krona” on her son, so she and her husband are packing up and selling their house. They have had enough and is moving to a community that has an Autism school. I am sorry to say that we can not follow suit. We don’t have the funds to buy a new house somewhere. My husband could not commute from the place where she and her family is moving. And I would have to spend my entire day on the road with children, in a car that has gone beyond its expiration date. Deep sigh! And please, the reader of my blog who keeps sending me a comment that states that now is the time for me to be happy and make plans: Please, refrain from sending me that comment again!!! It’s getting offensive.