I acknowledge what you seem to be saying about TEACCH but would have to disagree and would be interested, as you are so against it, what other intervention you feel is more appropatiate to meet the needs of people with ASD?
Are these comparible with TEACCH in that it accepts ASD is a life long disablity and works with the autism rather than aiming to cure it.
I think the comment about Gary Mezibov having a ‘vested interested’ may be true but surely you could say the same about the majority of other interventions Eg Son-Rise program. Just because someone has a vested interest doesn’t mean the intervention is wrong.
Similarly when you say TEACCH hasn’t been ‘proved’ can you show that other interventions have.
I acknowledge your comment about ‘sweet and sour but’ if schools and parents genuinely feel that TEACCH has had a positive impact on their child and that they are learning then surely it is acceptable for them to continue with an intervention they know works – no one wants their child to be a guinea pig for something that may not work.
You seem to be suggesting that TEACCH is used for all children with ASD in exactly the same way. Of course you are right all children with ASD are unique and, if the right observations, assessments and reflection of the work implimented is done then TEACCH interventions would and definatley should be designed and introduced to each individual child to meet their needs at any given time. This will take into account their levels of anxiety, communication and functioning, all of which can change very quickly.
If a school are introducing a blanket approach to TEACCH – that is one size fits all, then it will fail but that is a shortcoming of the school and not the intervention.
I appreciate that, as you say, your child is an aural learner and therefore TEACCH may not be appropriate for him. However it is generally acknowledged that people with ASD are predominately visual learners and I have certainly found this to be the case in my work. Again the visual supports implimented need to be designed specifcially for that child in that given situation.
I have generally found, when talking and working with parents, that they understand the problems they and their children are experiencing when they look at it in the context of a ‘culture of autism’ and, although some parents don’t understand it i have not yet found a parent against this way of looking it their child.
If, as you say, few teachers will ever understand what it is like to live with autism and don’t have time to explore this on an individaul basis then using TEACCH as an intervention would be no less producive than any other. Indeed, this may be the case for some mainstream schools but in our autism specific provision we have some brilliant teachers and LSAs who, as much as any of us can, do look at the world with an ‘autism head’ on.
My experince working with families is not that they grab at anything, namely TEACCH. Often this is a long way down the line after they have explored other interventions, ones that seem to be promoting a cure. Many of our families are not ready to look at TEACCH until they have come to terms with the diagnosis and the fact that it is a lifelong condition.
I am far from as certain as you seem to be that a future study into TEACCH will result in an onslaught from parents to schools and again I would ask what alternative you feel is more appropriate.