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When will we learn?

Autism is a lifelong developmental disability which affects one in 100 people in the UK. It affects the way a person communicates and how they experience the world around them. Some people with autism are able to live independent lives, but others may face additional challenges including learning disabilities.

Early intervention, education and support are critical if children and young people with autism are to lead fulfilling lives, learn, thrive and achieve. The number of children receiving extra help for autism in schools has seen a 78% rise since 2010. Currently 100,012 children are receiving extra help as a result of their autism. The majority of children with autism (72,540) are educated in mainstream schools and academies.

We heard from 745 children and young people with autism, parents and carers in our survey. We collected statistics from Freedom of Information requests, research from other organisations and the Department for Education. Together, they show the damning reality for children and young people with autism at school today and make a compelling case for changes to our education system.