The Secondary Social Communication Program utilizes a cognitive behavioural approach and a collaborative proactive solutions approach to provide intensive support to some students with Autism. These students do not automatically assimilate the unwritten rules of social interaction. Students diagnosed with high-functioning Autism or Asperger Syndrome must be directly taught how to have successful interactions at home, at school and in their community.
The Secondary Social Communication Program’s focus will be to teach and enhance students’ ability to understand the thoughts, feelings and motivations of other people. Social communication goals are collaboratively developed between school, student and parent. Skill areas to be addressed will include understanding emotions of self and others, communication, relationship development, understanding of self as a learner, and self-advocacy. Transition supports to post-secondary and community opportunities will be planned and facilitated.
A customized timetable is created for each student. Structured opportunities and instruction to increase social communication and understanding the perspective of other will be provided for a minimum of one period each day. Thus, the timeline for earning a high school diploma may be extended. Explicit planning is provided to facilitate generalization of skills in all environments. The Secondary Social Communication Program teacher and classroom teacher will support students in their subject-specific classes as needed.