A show to watch: Best Kept Secret

I did not catch all of this episode, but this looks like a fantastic documentary about autism and the families and school workers who navigate the transitions as children age out of the public school system.

The web site is here. It looks like you can stream the episode if your public television station does not show it.

Here is the description of the show:

At a public school in Newark, N.J., the staff answers the phone by saying, “You’ve reached John F. Kennedy High School, Newark’s best-kept secret.” JFK provides an exceptional environment for students with special-education needs. In Best Kept Secret, Janet Mino, who has taught a class of young men for four years, is on an urgent mission. She races against the clock as graduation approaches for her severely autistic minority students. Once they graduate and leave the security of this nurturing place, their options for living independently will be few. Mino must help them find the means to support themselves before they “age out” of the system.

Motivation key in autism?

Here’s an interesting story out of Scientific American about how motivation plays a huge part in the “testing” done with people with autism.

Luc certainly has never been one to perform on tests or tasks just to make teachers or researchers happy. He does not have a high need to please others. How much of our “knowledge” about autism depends on assumptions about the tests we use that are questionable?

Discovering Autism

The Los Angeles Times has produced a series of articles and supporting materials on autism. It looks like lots of good information.

Link here.