FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
Any child with autism or autistic features, from the age of 2 to 7 years is eligible to attend the Early Intervention School Readiness Programme. At least one parent needs to be part of the programme.
An applicant may register at the Front Office for a particular session of the programme at the National Center of Autism. Depending upon the vacancy for the particular and the child's profile [following a functional assessment], we offer admission.
Each term will have a group of six children who train together with their mothers (or parent primarily involved in the child's education) throughout the duration of the programme.
10 am to 1:00 pm; Monday through Friday except the last Friday of the month.
There are several other programmes that we offer at AFA for children and adults across the spectrum to address different needs and strengthen different skills. Click here to read more about AFA programmes.
The fee structure is available at the front office.
Whilst it is true that the more functionally able person with autism can go through mainstream education, the success of this experience largely depends on a combination of the kind of autism specific intervention that the child has received, especially at the early ages and the accommodations and support that the mainstream facility provides for the child. And the philosophy of Aakaar has its roots in this. All the children who participate in Aakaar, are very young, wherein their brains have greater plasticity, the learning retention and changing of behaviours is far quicker and easier. The inputs given to the children at Aakaar, in addition to covering all the areas targeted in a typical early intervention programme, have aspects specific to the skills required by a child in the mainstream. Further, recognising the fact that many mainstream schools in the country may not have the complete wherewithal to provide accurate accommodations for the child with autism, the parent is trained alongside, so as to ensure that they are aware of the needs of the child and the kind of support that he/she may need in a mainstream environment and are equipped to provide the necessary inputs and support as and when required, whilst their child undergoes mainstream education.
Meals aren't provided but there is a cafeteria on the premises where breakfast and lunch is prepared and may be purchased.
All our teachers are formally trained to work with people with autism and other allied conditions. Action for Autism has pioneered teaching strategies based on extensive practical experience and internationally used sound behavioural principles, adapted to the Indian context. These techniques are now part of our RCI recognised course in Autism. Teacher-trainees must do outside reading and written assignments, but simultaneously they are participating in a limited manner in the home visits, special programs, and daily operation of the school. Several of our teachers have also received training from TEACCH in Chapel Hill, N.C., from Heartspring in Kansas and Autism ACTION in Chicago and have attended several conferences and seminars across India and in countries like USA, Denmark, and the Philippines to name some. And, of course, our teachers participate in trainings and workshops, that take place all over India, conducted by visiting professionals, both Indian and international.
Yes, if a condition co-exists along with Autism, then admission would be considered. However, we are currently not offering admission to children with a diagnosis of only Intellectual Disability or Down's syndrome at this time.
Aakaarruns twice a year, beginning in January and July of each year. If your child is eligible for the programme and vacancy is not available for a particular session, you are most welcome to register for a later session. Alongside or in its stead, you can always avail of one or more of any of the other Services that we offer, in particular the Social Communication Programmes or the Parent Child Training Programme.