What are the views and experiences of autistic teachers? Findings from an online survey in the UK

Wood, R. and Happé, F. (2023) What are the views and experiences of autistic teachers? Findings from an online survey in the UK. Disability and Society, 38(1), pp. 47-72. (doi: 10.1080/09687599.2021.1916888)

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Despite significant research into the education of autistic children and young people (CYP) and an increased awareness of the employment needs and rights of autistic adults, little attention has been paid to autistic teachers. We discuss findings drawn from an online survey in the UK in which autistic teachers and other autistic education staff (n = 149) describe the lack of understanding, sensory impacts, mental health issues and the complexities associated with revealing an autism diagnosis as a result of their work. These issues can represent significant impediments to either entering or remaining in the school education profession. Positive experiences were also found and, from a social justice perspective, the possibilities of autistic school staff to constitute a role model for autistic CYP and to facilitate their educational inclusion are considered. Future directions in this under-researched area are also discussed.

Item Type:Articles
Additional Information:Funded initially by the Economic and Social Research Council under grant number ES/ S011161/1.
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Wood, Dr Rebecca
Authors: Wood, R., and Happé, F.
College/School:College of Social Sciences > School of Education
Journal Name:Disability and Society
Publisher:Taylor & Francis
ISSN (Online):1360-0508
Published Online:17 May 2021
Copyright Holders:Copyright © 2021 The Author(s)
First Published:First published in Disability and Society 38(1): 47-72
Publisher Policy:Reproduced under a Creative Commons License

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