Aussie mum says teachers must intervene if daughter on spectrum has meltdowns
A Queensland mum has urged better teacher training, and the wearing of flak jackets if necessary, to cope with her daughter’s school meltdowns.
The Gold Coast Bulletin reports that the mother, Paula Brand, spoke out after three teachers stood and watched as daughter Isabella “trashed” her Miami State School classroom.
Ms Brand says Isabella was suspended for two days after tipping over every desk in the room.
“She had a massive meltdown where she completely levelled the classroom,” Ms Brand told The Bulletin.
“When I walked in there was nothing left standing. It was like a bomb site. But all of that destruction didn’t have to happen. She should have been removed from the class before it was destroyed.
“I was told they (teachers) did not have to intervene if they did not want to so whose fault is it? My daughter is not an evil troublemaker — she just has autism.”
Ms Brand told The Bulletin she had written to the school’s parents in the hope they understand her daughter’s challenges.
“I’m not bagging the school, I’m just begging the school to have the right training,” Ms Brand added.
Ms Brand said Isabella was creative, excelled at maths and had a ready smile but during “meltdowns” had incredible strength fuelled by adrenaline.
“It’s like a cyclone. I don’t care if you have to wear some sort of flak jacket — pick up the kid and take her out of the class.”
The Department of Education and Training last year established statewide advisory service to support teachers called the Autism Hub.
A department spokesman told The Bulletin said the hub worked closely with Autism Queensland — and parents and schools could access it for advice.