Preventing School Exclusion


Preventing school exclusion: a case study of a primary aged autistic child with ADHD and a PDA profile

This case study describes the initiatives that were adopted to help ‘Jack’, a 7 year old boy, avoid a third exclusion from school. Jack was diagnosed with autism and ADHD but he didn’t respond positively to strategies often used with autistic children.

Jack struggled to maintain relationships with peers and found the demands of school life stressful. He displayed increasingly disruptive behaviour which lead to two temporary exclusions. Jack’s school contacted a local advisory teacher for autism who assessed him along with input from a paediatrician. He was diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Condition with Extreme Demand Avoidance (ASC/EDA).

Following consultation with a range of agencies, adjustments were made to Jack’s school environment and the staff received additional Autism Awareness Training. His class teacher attended a specific EDA course. Jack has since started to thrive at school.

The aim of this paper is to inform teaching professionals about the avoidance profile of autism and highlight useful adjustments that can be made within the school environment. Parents may also find it a useful resource as it’s an optimistic account of educating a child with additional needs.


Authors: Catrina Lyle and Heather Leatherland

Published: Good Autism Practice Journal, autumn 2018