Monthly Archives: February 2012

Unfair treatment for 4th-grader with autism

OK parents, you’re gonna wanna sit down before you read this. Because you’re gonna jump to your feet as you read it.

All I can say is separation is not the answer.  Just as segregation was never the answer.

Many of us parents find that our kids have to be taught the behaviors that are expected in public. And there are lots more creative ways to deal with sensory overload than being closed in a closet. I daresay more constructive ones.

What makes this even more sad is that an aide is involved. In my experience, with the proper training, an aide can step in to help the teacher — to minimize disruptions and maximize recovery time. Doesn’t sound like any good strategies were in place here. Which is unfortunate for teacher, classmates and Sage himself.

If you find that you need some creative solutions for your student with autism spectrum disorders, please contact me. I’d be happy to develop a plan for you.

Teacher placed on leave in flap over autistic boy’s treatment

The student tells his mother that he was ordered to sit in a cardboard box during class. The principal tells investigators that the boy voluntarily used the box as a refuge.

By Phil Willon, Los Angeles Times

February 28 2012

When Kim Rollins’ son asked for a pair of scissors to take to school a few weeks ago, she was heartened that the fourth-grader, diagnosed with an autism-related disorder, was excited by a class project.

The complete article can be viewed at:,0,5739659.story

Visit at

Welcome to the Autism Resource Mom (ARM) Blog!

DEBORA L. SMITH Mom of teenager with high-functioning autism.

Whatever your reason for landing on this page, welcome! Maybe you have a loved one with an autism spectrum disorder. Perhaps you know someone who does. Or maybe you’re on the spectrum yourself. It doesn’t matter why, but I’m glad you’re here.

I’m Debora L. Smith, and I’m the mom behind Autism Resource Mom (ARM).

On these pages you’ll find autism-related  news, nutrition suggestions and book reviews — along with a helpful tip of the week.

My journey started almost 15 years ago. And I wouldn’t trade it for anything. For every struggle, a victory was to be had. For every headache, relief. For every cruel comment or stare, an understanding angel would be dropped into my life. And for every night that I cried myself to sleep, I was repaid ten-fold with poignant moments of tearful joy. And be assured that this roller coaster continues. But I wouldn’t have it any other way.

I’ve come to understand that autism is not a disability, but rather a different kind of ability. As such, traditional approaches to communication, socialization, recreation and more must give way to more creative, more focused, more knowing approaches.

As my knowledge of autism has grown, other parents and families have sought my counsel. I’ve become their trusted resource. And now I can become yours.

Please visit me on my site at

Wednesday, March 21 — Empowering OC Families Resource Fair


Empowering Orange County Families Resource Fair

I will be speaking at 6:15pm on “Organizing Your Child for Academic & Personal Success.”

I look forward to seeing you there!