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Guide To Autism Resources, Schools & Support In Hong Kong

Autism or Autism Spectrum Disorder is a condition that affects 1 in 44 people worldwide. Autism is often said to be on a spectrum, meaning that the severity or non-severity of symptoms differs from one person to another –  indeed everybody with autism with different. It is not a disease, so there is no “cure”. People diagnosed with autism can go on to have full, happy lives provided they get the support they need. Read on to better understand what autism is, where to get assessments done, and any resources and support you may need, in Hong Kong.

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    What Is Autism?

    Signs Of Autism

    Generally, you cannot formally diagnose autism before the age of two, although parents can usually sport the signs before then. It is more prevalent in males than females and usually co-occurs with other conditions like ADHD, dyslexia, anxiety, depression and epilepsy. Signs of autism in young children may include:

    • not responding to their name
    • avoiding eye contact
    • not smiling when you smile at them
    • getting visibly upset by certain tastes, smells or sounds
    • repetitive movements, such as flapping their hands, flicking their fingers or rocking their body
    • not talking as much as other children
    • not doing as much pretend play
    • repeating the same phrases

    In older children, signs of autism may include seemingly not being able to understand other people's feelings or thoughts, repetitive speech, having a strict routine and schedule (and getting very upset should those change), and difficulty making friends. For more details click here.

    Sometimes, autistic children can be physically or verbally abusive to others and it is important to then understand the root and cause of those behaviors and reactions.

    ATEC (Autism Treatment Evaluation Checklist) is an at-home toolkit you can use as a starting point - however bear in mind that results are not completely accurate.

  • autism resources and support in hong kong

    Living With Autism

    How To Improve Quality Of Life

    People diagnosed with autism can live full lives given the proper support. They might just need extra support with some aspects of their lives such as for example making and maintaining friendships and their schooling. For day-to-day life, and living with a child with autism, it is important to first help your child communicate their needs and also make sure that you are easily understood in return by keeping the language simple and clear and using other verbal and non-verbal cues.

    When dealing with behavioral troubles or "meltdowns" it is important to then understand the cause of it to better prepare for next time. Many of these stem from anxiety and not knowing how to deal with that anxiety. For more information, please click here. Applied Behavior Analysis therapy or ABA can help children break down certain behaviors and skills into components that are simpler, and positive reinforcement is then used with correct responses and reactions (click here for more information).


  • Autistm Assessment And Child Therapy Centers

    Autism Resources In Hong Kong
    Similar to other learning difficulties, Autism Spectrum Disorder is not diagnosed in one simple assessment; rather, there are a variety of screening and assessment tools that may be used during the assessment process. While the two biggest assessments are Autism Diagnostic Observation Schedule (ADOS) and the Autism Diagnostic Interview-Revised (ADI-R), there are many more that might be more relevant depending on your individual child. The assessments are typically in two parts - one around developmental assessment and more of a comprehensive diagnostic evaluation. Child Development Services can help steer you on the government side, and there are plenty of private clinics in Hong Kong that can help as well.

    Autism Government Assessments In Hong Kong:

    Other Key Autism Resources In Hong Kong:

  • Mainstream Schools With Inclusive Curriculums For Children Diagnosed With Autism

    Autism Resources In Hong Kong

    There are a number of forward-thinking schools to choose from in Hong Kong that support neurodiversity and provide extra support where needed.

    • ESF (English Schools Foundation): ESF students with special educational needs including autism have three broad options based upon identification using the ESF Levels of Adjustment (LOA) Framework. Students can be provided with Mainstream Placement with Additional Support, where the child is given additional support when needed. Learning Support where children are included in mainstream classes with additional support from specialist SEN teachers and educational assistants.
    • HKILA: This school prides itself on delivering individualised quality education and having small class sizes and high teacher to student ratios. They follow the UK National Curriculum and use the "stage not age" approach to teaching. Through their TailorED@HKILA programs, they can offer specialist education provision for students needed a little extra support.
    • Hong Kong Academy: One of the founding pillars of Hong Kong Academy is inclusive education: actually seeking out and celebrating students with diverse learning needs, and providing a learning environment that integrates them into the mainstream classroom. They use a data-based approached to form an International Individualised Learning Plan, and evaluate each child based on formal and informal assessments.
    • The Harbour School: Not only an excellent school, but a refreshingly inclusive one, THS are dedicated to ensuring that their students and the whole school community benefit from the diversity of their students. They are the first to recognize that a one-size-fits-all approach does not work - their Learning Support program is a step-by-step approach to providing the right support for students who may need it.
    • The International Christian School: The bridging program, Bridges gives students at ICS a tailor-made learning program called an Individualized Education Plan, comprising mainstream classes, co-curricular programs, and extra-curricular activities. The children receive one-to-one and small-group tuition and spend about 50% of their time in mainstream classes.
    • Australian International School (AISHK): An inclusive school, their Learning Enrichment team works across the school with classroom teachers to enrich the mainstream curriculum for all students. The LEC team also has access to a part-time private speech pathologist on-site.
  • Specialist Schools For Children Diagnosed With Autism

    Autism Resources In Hong Kong

    For kids on the autism spectrum who may prefer a safer environment that is specifically adapted to neurodivergent brains, smaller class sizes, and higher levels of support, there are a number of options to choose from.

    • Link School: This school was set up by a group of parents who wanted their kids to be taught in a small class setting, with every opportunity to grow and flourish. They are dedicated to providing quality education while supporting special education needs.
    • The AP School: Founded by the Autism Partnership Network, the AP School provides high-quality elementary education for children diagnosed with autism.
  • More-Autism-Resources-hong kong

    More Autism Resources In Hong Kong

    Here we've compiled a helpful list of online and local resources to guide you through your journey.

  • Autism-Resources-Support-Groups-Singapore

    Facebook Groups For Parents Of Kids With Autism In Hong Kong

    Autism Resources In Hong Kong

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