In today’s society there are no mainstream schools that cater for all the needs of all individuals on the autism spectrum. While there is more acceptance and there is more awareness, there are still no schools that open their doors unreservedly to individuals with autism. Over time as awareness and acceptance of autism has increased, and while more individuals present with autism and families desperately seek for aid and special schools for autism there has been an increase of privately owned special schools for autism. Some better than others of course as some will be just a care facility that caters to “look after” the child with autism during the course of the day, while others strive to use the best techniques to make it a special school for autism. The Star Academy has really found the recipe to comprehensive autism treatment – a whole-child and whole-family solution. The Star Academy does not quite classify itself as a special school for autism but rather an intervention centre which provides an international standard of intervention for children and adolescents on the autism spectrum. What is really needed is for our government to recognise and mandate funding from medical aid for autism treatment the way it is recognised and mandated for in the United States, where The Star Academy’s treatment method, Applied Behaviour Analysis, was created and developed. The Star Academy take each individual with autism as a unique case. They do not generalize the same teachings to all instead they cater for the special needs of each individual and design their own programme to follow with a set of very skilled instructors to give each individual with autism theirs own “special school”. Autism is a spectrum disorder and because each individual presents differently, each individual must be provided with a tailor-made intervention plan. For those children who are ready to benefit from a school environment, The Star Academy also offers instructors who can facilitate a child in a mainstream or remedial school. What this means is that if the child with autism that attends this special school has the correct prerequisites to be in a mainstream school such as compliance, following instructions, being able to communicate, etc. The Star Academy will with the permission of the accepting school start to integrate that child from the special school for autism into the school setting with the aid of a facilitator by their side. The Star Academy also thinks outside of the microcosms of the school and centre environment, and offers parent training, home sessions, community outings, facilitation on playdates, and facilitation in extracurricular settings such as karate classes or soccer classes. Parents can rest assured that their children are in good hands with The Star Academy’s Board Certified Behaviour Analysts and Board Certified Autism Technicians on staff.

What’s the biggest topic for parents today? Autism! Why you may ask is this a topic so well known to parents nowadays when it was something we almost never heard about when we were growing up? Autism has been around for many years, but in recent years it has taken on the label of an “epidemic” due to the exponential increase in incidence rate. Thankfully, along with the increase in incidence, has come an increase in awareness, and more and more families are accessing the treatment their children need. That is important to know – that with the correct intervention at the correct time, recovery from autism is possible, and with the correct intervention at any time, improvement of the symptoms of autism is possible. With this being said parents are now aware that children with autism need schooling facilities specific to their needs. It may come as a surprise that there are not many schools for children with autism. Why, you may ask, are there not many schools for children with autism? Well that is the question – why aren’t there more school for children with autism??? With the rise of awareness and prevalence of autism, one would think there would be a rise in school facilities for children with autism.

However in South Africa this is not the case. Autism Spectrum disorder has only recently been given more thought and coverage as compared to 15 years back. As previously stated autism has been around for many years in South Africa, hence there are places for children with autism can go to. However, the vast majority of these facilities aren’t specific to children with autism. These facilities cater to a variety of special needs children, autistic children being one of them. That being said these facilities have been a major help to the autistic community, giving the needed help in fighting the battle of autism. But is this enough? Should special needs facility be the only option for children with autism? The answer is NO! This should not be the only option available to children with autism, especially because every child with autism is different, and has their own unique set of strengths and difficulties. There should be more options, and of recent years there have been a growing number of autistic based facilities available, care facilities, and provide therapy based facilities. However this is still not enough.

Thankfully, The Star Academy provides a recipe for success – skilled and certified staff, a comprehensive curriculum, ongoing supervision of every case, and the capacity to provide services not only locally but in neighbouring cities and even abroad! So, if you are looking for schools for children with autism, please visit our head office or contact us to arrange a remote interview so that we can explain more to you about this incredibly effective intervention centre.

Schools for Autistic child – different options, why ABA and what to look out for

When typing ‘schools for Autistic child’ into Google, countless links pop up to a vast variety of different schools for autistic children offering an assorted range of therapies and services. This can only add to the pressure parents face when trying to choose a school that would best suit their child’s needs. There are definitely more therapies out there than there are hours in the week and money in the bank to try them all out.
Speech therapy, Occupational therapy, Physical therapy, and social skills therapy are just a few of those most commonly offered by schools for autistic children. Many schools for autistic child also offer cognitive-, play-, art- or music therapy.

However, Applied Behaviour Analysis (ABA) is the only intervention that is considered an evidence-based best practice treatment by the US Surgeon General and by the American Psychological Association. “Evidence based” means that ABA has underwent rigorous scientific tests proving its usefulness, quality and efficacy. ABA therapy can include a wide variety of different techniques. That is why it is important to first do thorough research before deciding on a school for autistic children, to ensure that their child receives the best ABA.
When looking for ABA schools for autistic children one must consider the following:

  • Staffing: When investigating providers or centres, we strongly encourage you to see if they have a Board Certified Behaviour Analyst on staff, ask questions about the credentials of the staff that are working there and with your child.
  • Safety: Your child is precious, thus it is important to know that they are in safe hands. Background checks should be considered standard practice and are typically done by schools, centres, and most providers.
  • Expectations: There is no ABA magic wand, it takes hard, dedicated work by a lot of people to help your child reach their potential. Watch out for grandiose promises about idealistic outcomes. Providers who promise instant cures should be probed.
  • Plans: Each plan for each child should be individualized, focusing on skills that are valued by you and that facilitate skills that can be used in real world settings and that lead to meaningful adult outcomes.
  • Data: Data collection is a critical component of all ABA programs. Providers, centres and schools should be able to regularly provide you data in a format that is understandable, and they should explain how to interpret the data.
  • The Future: Plans should address generalization which refers to the ability of being able to use a skill in all appropriate situations, such as at home or on vacation. Maintenance which refers to keeping a skill once you learn it, should also play an important role.

The rising number of autistic children is a worrying factor to say the least. The reason why it’s a worrying factor is because the facilities available for autistic children. In an era where education is key in almost all sectors of living, it becomes key to find the right schooling facilities. This being said autistic children don’t have a wide variety of choice to choose from. So what are the school options for autistic children? Well there are special need schools, remedial schools, and care centre type of schooling. However these are not the ideal type of schools for autistic children. As is known autistic children need the proper guidance, care and love, for them to flourish. Without the proper guidance children with autism will not reach their full potential. As there are no specific schools for autism children, there are specific school that take in autistic children. These schools are a great help as they help bridge the gap in educational level in which a child is capable of reaching. So what is the option, as it stands special schools accommodate autistic children. These schools cater to autistic children by providing the educational factor at a pace that is suitable to child. There is also the option of remedial schools; here it becomes tricky, as remedial schools cater to children to get on to par with mainstream schooling. Some autistic children can fit in to remedial schools; however majority of autistic children will not cope fully in that environment. There is also another factor to consider for schools for autistic children, and that is government and private special schooling. On a government level the options of special needs facilities is wide, however the inclusion of autistic children in these schools are limited, as they have to see to specific needs of other children. In a private school setting they are more inclusive of autistic children, and they are able to cater to the other special needs children as well. This then draws the point of how availability of private special schooling, as these schools are expensive and not widely available to all autistic children. Another factor to consider is that even in special schools there is still not the one on one bases that children with autism need, as one on one bases provides more therapy based as well as help to achieve more goals with one on one bases. That being said autistic children also need to be in an environment that provides the positivity and the individuals working with autistic children need to provide the children with love care and their 100% effort. Hence schools for autistic children need to improve and help become more aware of what is needed for autistic children and provide them with the much needed care. Every child is special and autistic children are even more special, they need all the love care and full support that they are surrounded by, especially with the people who teach them on a daily basis.

When looking for schools for autism I would say that there are two main obstacles: First is trusting that your children will be fine on their first day. The nervous energy that accompanies any big milestone like the first day or new school can create anxiety in parents. Some advice is do things to help you stay positive and calm because it will reflect on your children when you have decided on your school for autism. They are often very attuned to parents’ behavior as well as reactions and will take their lead from what you say and do…so stay positive even if you have reasons to worry, have the same outlook when looking for schools for autism.

And second is sharing of information. I remind teachers all the time to reach out and communicate. If it helps, send your child with a note or email sharing all the things they like or dislike or can or can’t eat and make sure the school for autism you pick are fully informed. Don’t be afraid to share what your goals and wishes are for the school year. Teachers welcome this information. And it just might help alleviate your concerns on that first day making the look for schools for autism a little less daunting.

When looking and researching schools for autism visit the school and take pictures! Rehearsal, practice and exposure are some of the hallmarks of how we work with students on the spectrum, so starting school for the first time should be no different. Many schools will provide plenty of information before the first day, but if they don’t, go and visit the school.

Plenty of staff are in the building of schools for autism busy setting up and if you explain your unique situation it is a great time to meet friendly faces in a quiet setting. If the building isn’t open for some reason, then play on the playground or walk around the school to get used to the sights and sounds. Walking the halls and sitting in the chairs will give both the child and parent a great visual on how the first day might look.

There are many options when deciding on schools for autism, and the best one will be directly in line with what the parents would want and how comfortable the institute makes the child and parents feel, therefore go and explore, look at all your options, test them all if you are not sure.

At The Star Academy, we typically ensure that our children have the prerequisite skills in place for benefiting from a school environment (including skills such as being able to make needs and wants known to others, imitation, communication, ability to follow instructions, and several others) before we approach a school for admission. This helps set your child up for success in the school environment and ensures that their time there will be well-spent.

Waarvoor moet mens uitkyk wanneer jy na Skole vir outisme behandeling – en onderrig soek? Talle ouers is nie bereid om hul kinders op te gee nie, maar weet dikwels nie waar om te begin of waarvoor om te soek nie. Dit is die desperate ouers wat dikwels die minste hulp ontvang om die beste plasing vir hul kind te vind.
Nadat jy hierdie vraag in ‘n snuffel gids of soek-enjin in getik het, besef jy ook dat om die regte inligting te vind, soortgelyk is aan ‘n pad deur ‘n reënwoud te sny, eerder as water in die woestyn te vind. Jy vind jouself omring deur verskillende skole, benaderings, terapieë, oortuigings en advies. Wel, hier is nog een artikel in jou soektog na ‘n skool vir jou kind. Die doelwit van hierdie artikel is om riglyne ten opsigte van ‘n berekende soektog na die regte plasing vir jou kind te bied. Na my mening is die volgende aspekte noodsaaklike elemente van enige skool vir outisme:

Die onderrig van ‘n kind met outisme deur gebruik te maak van ‘n gestandaardiseerde kurrikulum is ‘n resep vir mislukking en dikwels rampspoedig. Dit is waar dat ‘n groot aantal kinders op die spektrum aan hoofstroom onderrig kan deelneem, maar dit gebeur dikwels eers nadat ‘n geïndividualiseerde behandelingsprogram geïmplementeer is. Die kurrikulum moet gebaseer wees op jou kind se individuele behoeftes, swakpunte en sterkpunte. Daar is hoegenaamd niks verkeerd om hoofstroom-onderrig as ‘n doelwit te stel nie, maar dan moet jou kind die vaardighede hê om suksesvol te wees in so ‘n omgewing. Die vaardighede wat hulle nou benodig, moet dus identifiseer en onderrig word.

Wat ‘n wonderlike frase om op jou webwerf te rond te gooi! Al wat jy regtig nodig het, is een halfhartige studie met ‘n steekproefgrootte van min of meer vyf individue wat goed gevaar het om jou intervensie as wetenskaplik bewys te verklaar. Kyk fyn na hul wetenskaplike metodes, en kyk hoe hul daardie frase definieer en gebruik. Wetenskap-gebaseerd beteken noodwendig dat al die bewyse, versigtig versamel, daarop dui dat die leermetode doeltreffend is. Wanneer jy soek na ‘n skool vir jou kind met outisme, kyk na skole wat gebruik maak van ‘n benadering wat effektief is volgens navorsingsverslae- en artikels.

Konstante herbeoordeling van die onderrigmetode
Wie se skuld is dit wanneer ‘n kind, enige kind, nie leer nie? Dit is ‘n moeilike vraag en het oënskynlik vele antwoorde, maar een ding bly konstant: as jy ‘n onderrigmetode het wat nie doeltreffend is nie, dan is dit nie regtig ‘n onderrigmetode nie, of hoe? Herevaluering van die onderrig-metodologie is noodsaaklik vir doeltreffende onderrig. Wanneer ek vra: “Is die my benadering tot die onderrig vir hierdie kind die beste wat hul kan ontvang?”, moet daar in ag geneem word dat subjektiewe gevoelens nie akkuraat is nie. Die ware sukses van ‘n onderrig-intervensie is die resultate soos aangetoon deur objektiewe data. Dit verg moed en oefening om jouself sonder emosie te evalueer en is die punt van ‘n werklik effektiewe opvoeder. Wees opsoek na opvoedkundige sentrums of skole wat ervare is met hierdie vlak van evaluasie, en bereid is om veranderinge te maak in die kind se belang.

Wat word daarmee bedoel dit dat skole vir outisme behandeling eties moet wees? Dit beteken dat hulle die beste doen vir die kind met die minimale hoeveelheid skade en met inagneming van die individuele situasie waarin die kind haarself bevind. Dit beteken dat die opvoeder nie net die nog ‘n warm lyf in die klaskamer is nie, maar die klaskamer omskep in ‘n wêreld waar geluk en leer ‘n werklikheid is, nie ‘n ideaal nie. Dit sluit nie alle trane en hartseer uit nie. Dit is belangrik vir ‘n opvoeder om te verstaan wanneer die voordele van wat ‘n kind kan leer, swaarder weeg as hoe moeilik dit is om die vaardighede te leer.

Oorweeg voorvereiste vaardighede
Ek kan nie die aantal kere wat ek al ‘n ouer of opvoeder by skole vir outisme behandeling gehoor sê het dat ‘n kind nie iets kan doen nie met ‘n finaliteit in hul stem. Die frase is ‘n doodloopstraat met nêrens om te gaan nie. Wel, gewoonlik as ek in ‘n doodloopstraat ry, draai ek om, gaan terug en kyk waar ek verkeerd gegaan het. As ‘n kind iets nie leer nie, is dit heel moontlik dat hulle nie die grondslag vaardighede het wat nodig is om suksesvol te wees nie. Met die regte voorvereiste vaardighede in plek, maak dit alle verwante toekomstige vaardighede baie makliker om aan te leer en plaas die kind in ‘n ideale posisie waar hulle, ten minste sommige van die nuwe vaardighede, self kan leer. Hierdie geld vir alle leerders, op die outisme-spektrum of nie.

Handhaaf ‘n Gesonde balans tussen optimisties en realisties
Ongelukkig is die meeste mense geneig om ons unieke kinders te onderskat. Dit is maklik om te doen, aangesien dit dikwels moeiliker is vir hierdie kinders om hul potensiaal te bereik. Dit sal egter ‘n veel meer intelligente persoon as ek, of iemand wat ek al ontmoet het, neem om die potensiaal van enige persoon wat hulle ontmoet akkuraat te skat. Kinders op die spektrum kan hul potensiaal dikwels nie bewys, tensy ons hulle die geleentheid gee om dit te doen nie. Bygesê, pasop vir beloftes wat te goed klink om waar te wees. Dit is waar dat baie kinders op die spektrum in staat is daartoe om sinvolle, gelukkige en onafhanklike lewens te leef, maar die weg na hierdie uitkoms is plavei met haalbare doelwitte, en neem bloedsweet, en tyd. Enige instansie of individu wat ‘n vinnige oplossing bied, bied slegs ‘n klein deel van wat jou kind nodig het, of weet nie waarvan hulle praat.

Werk as deel van ‘n span
Een van die maatreëls van ‘n suksesvolle opleiding by skole vir outisme behandeling is betrokke ouers. Dit geld veral vir kinders met ontwikkelings versteurings. Skole vir outisme behandeling moet ouers en ander professionele persone aanmoedig om deel te wees van ‘n span, maar moet ook geleenthede skep vir hierdie span om te ontmoet, doelwitte te bespreek en tegnieke te implementeer. Konsekwentheid kan nie oorbeklemtoon word nie. Wanneer die kind met dieselfde onderrigleer, dieselfde verwagtinge en dieselfde lesse in baie verskillende omgewings en deur almal in hul lewe aangebied word, sal hul vaardighede vinniger kan aanleer. Die ontwikkelings-gaping, wat aanvanklik onoorbrugbaar voorgekom het, sal stadig maar seker kleiner en al minder uitdagend word, sodra almal saam aan die brug bou.

Fokus op funksionele verandering
Om werklike, funksionele verandering te maak, moet daar besef word dat die skool slegs deel van ‘n kind se omgewing is en dat die meerderheid van daardie kind se toekomstige lewe buite die skool sal wees. Soms moet ‘n lyn getrek word tussen wat ‘n kind behoort te leer en wat in hulle beste belang is om te leer. ‘n Skool vir kinders op die outisme spektrum moet die individuele uitdagings herken en identifiseer waar hulle die grootste verskil kan maak en dienooreenkomstige leerdoelwitte implementeer.

Motivering gebaseerd
Die wegbeweeg van straf in skole het om ‘n rede gebeur. Dit word duidelik dat dit nie net die leerproses verarm nie, dit kan ook onvoorsiene probleme veroorsaak, soos ‘n kind wat bang is om vir ‘n onderwyser vrae te vra. Deur te vind wat ‘n kind motiveer, maak jy nie net die skool ‘n lekker plek om te wees nie, maar jy kan meer doeltreffende onderrig lewer.

Individuele en intensiewe aandag
Hoe kleiner die klaskamer, hoe meer individuele aandag ontvang kinders in skole vir outisme behandeling. Op vele maniere is een kind tot een onderwyser die ideale situasie, solank as wat daar ‘n plan vir integrasie in groep onderrig op ‘n latere stadium in plek gestel word. Die waarheid is dat kinders op die spektrum stadiger leer as hul neurotipiese eweknieë, dus verg hulle meer aandag en meer tyd om te leer. Stadige leer- en ontwikkelings gapings hoef nie die “status quo” te wees nie. Leer ‘n kind om te leer deur middel van ‘n effektiewe onderrigprogram, en hulle sal nie langer ure en intensiewe intervensie nodig hê nie.

Werk hulself uit ‘n werk
Die droom van ‘n skool vir outisme moet wees om hul deure te sluit weens ‘n gebrek aan die nood vir dienste. As ‘n skool nie hierdie droom in sy hart het nie, mis dit die punt. ‘n Skool wat onderrig bied aan kinders met ontwikkelings versteurings soos outisme moet streef na ‘n wêreld waar almal in staat is om gelukkige en onafhanklike lewens te leef. Wat ‘n wonderlike wêreld sou dit wees as die alternatief onmoontlik was.

– Philip Viljoen (Raad-gesertifiseerde Outisme Tegnikus)

When it comes to autism boarding schools in South Africa, there is very little on offer. Options are few across the country and admittance to one of these schools can at times depend on where the family lives or be subject to screening and placement by the Department of Education.

The hostels of autism boarding schools in South Africa are often located off site from the school. As a parent of a child enrolled at the school, you will be asked to sign consent and indemnity forms in order for your child to participate in extra murals, giving permission for audio-visual and photos of your child to be used for Facebook/website, permission to transport your child. Once initial admission has been completed, there is a possibility of an observation period in which it is determined whether or not the school is a good placement for your child.

Children are assigned to classes and hostels according to their chronological age, placing children according to age will ensure that they are involved in activities that are age-appropriate but it may also be detrimental from various angles as the autism spectrum is very broad with intellectual and developmental disabilities ranging from mild to severe. Children with autism do not exhibit the same skill deficits and excesses, some children may be more successful with placement in a lower grade or sharing a room with another child who is at a similar developmental level, it also means that your child will be exposed to the behaviours of other students (possibly with more severe learning disabilities) which may be imitated.

Placing children in autism boarding schools in South Africa is essentially removing them from the environment they know and from the opportunity to learn from and interact with neurotypical peers. Some of the autism boarding schools in South Africa realize the need for inclusion opportunities and provide specialized and intensive treatment and education with the goal being to phase children into other specialized or mainstream schools (with support if necessary).

Autism boarding schools in South Africa give older children/young adults (ages of children range from 6-23 years) the opportunity to participate in prevocational programmes that will allow them to take on a personally meaningful role in the community. Living in a hostel could establish skills such as taking responsibility for one’s possessions, following rules, cooperation with others and improvement in overall self-efficiency. In order for any effects to be maintained over time, the parent/caregiver will have to part of the process and continue with procedures/plans put in place, at home.

Receiving a diagnosis of autism for your child can feel like a mudslide for any parent. Unfortunately, a diagnosis is only the starting point leading to numerous aspects of your child’s life that you now have to take into re-consideration. Education is often a prevalent concern and deciding not only on the type of schooling but whether or not to send your child to an autism boarding school is likely to be daunting.

If you are considering an autism boarding school, here are a few points to take into account before making any decisions:

  • Autism boarding schools require an ASD diagnosis before admission, this is often followed by an adjustment period. During this time parental visits are discouraged, however once the stipulated time has elapsed, visits on a regular basis are encouraged. This may be daunting for children who do not understand the separation from the parents or who struggle with change in their environment or routines.
  • It is often the case that children with autism are inflexible about numerous things, including schedules and environments. While enrolled at an autism boarding school, your child will learn to follow a set schedule, keep in mind that this schedule will differ during weekend/holiday home visits and may cause some distress.
  • Children with ASD (Autism Spectrum Disorder) are all able to learn in their own unique way, this entails that the educator be qualified not only as a teacher but as someone who is able to transition from one manner of teaching to the next in order to meet the needs of every child in the class. The Star Academy, as a rule, does not believe in grouping children on the autism spectrum because each one learns so differently.
  • Autism boarding schools provide small classes but take note of the exact number of children your child will share a classroom with as “small classes” can be anything from 4 to 13 pupils. The Star Academy advocates a 1:1 teaching ratio and then plans for and programmes towards integration into a remedial or mainstream environment, initially with a 1:1 school facilitator and ultimately without any assistance.
  • A good school placement, including an autism boarding school, should have an IEP (Individualized Education Program) in place. If you have decided that a boarding school is the best placement for your child, The Star Academy can provide a supervisor trained to develop an IEP for your child.
  • Be familiar with the teaching strategy that the autism boarding school makes use of not only in the class but also in the hostel. Teaching strategies can include, but are not limited to, one/all or a combination of the following: ABA (Applied Behaviour Analysis), TEACCH (Structured teaching), PECS (Picture Exchange Communication System), equine-assisted therapy, music therapy, Eclectic teaching approach, etc. It is important to note that, according to research, intensive ABA is far more effective than any other strategy or an eclectic approach.
  • Being able to effectively communicate is a basic right we all should have, this is no different for your child. Any school being considered for placement must have staff (including house staff and nurse at an autism boarding school) who are adequately trained in both communicating with your child and teaching your child to communicate using vocal speech or an augmentative communication system.
  • Other services that an autism boarding school is likely to offer include occupational therapy, physio therapy, psychologist.

No two children with autism are the same and neither are their needs or those of their families, when making a decision regarding school placement, whether it includes the possibility of an autism boarding school or not, make it an informed one.

Many families suffer incomprehensible challenges when they are first faced with the diagnosis of Autism and how to care for children with Autism. There are choices that need to be made and changes that need to happen sooner rather than later. Families are overwhelmed with new information, lifestyle adaptations and last but not least financial expenditures they did not foresee. Including Autism School in South Africa Fees.

All parents share a golden thread of wanting the absolute best for their children and as individuals committed to the very best in Autism treatment we at the Star Academy support this ambition whole heartedly. Finding the best care for children with autism spectrum disorders can be very challenging, not only do parents have to concern themselves with safety and care but also with fees. To find a care autism school in South Africa fees that are reasonable can be likened to finding a rare diamond, which often leaves parents feeling frustrated and despondent.

Parents also need to weigh up the different options of therapy routes to follow and time constraints as well. At Star Academy we strive to provide effective and impactful therapy every day because we know that our time is limited and that our children are fighting against all odds to beat Autism. By working closely with a team and supervisors common goals can be discussed and determined, this in turn ensures that no time is wasted and that therapy is mindful of the parents priorities as well as financial capabilities.

Care Autism school in South Africa Fees – how to choose a school

The Star Academy is not the average care facility for children with autism, it provides world class Applied Behavioural Treatment that encompasses more than the traditional “schooling areas”. It promotes independence and growth of skills in all areas of development. We work from a child centric perspective and adapt our therapy to support our children in the best way possible, rather than forcing children to meet a traditional school paradigm.

Focusing on the individual allows us to work at a pace that is appropriate which ensures that no child is left behind. Although therapy can focuses on skills that are not necessarily seen as “schools skills” traditionally it would be unrealistic and completely irresponsible to place a child into a schooling system when the fundamentals for learning are not in place. At the Star Academy we aim to help our children learn new skills on a daily basis and through proven means of instruction.

Working closely as a team and putting the childs needs above all else is what ensures success for the children of the Star Academy. Providing therapy with the needs and capabilities of parents in mind is something we strive to do and ensures that everyone is working towards the goal of beating Autism and none are left wondering “what now”.

The Star Academy is an Autism school in Pretoria and Johannesburg. We are a team of board-certified autism technicians who strive to provide our clients with the highest quality ABA treatment.

We have two centres based in Erasmus Kloof which are managed by our Case Manager Monique Erasmus.

Meet a few members of our Autism school in Pretoria Team

Autism school in PretoriaMonique Erasmus
I have been a supervisor at The Star Academy since 2010 and I have completed my BSocSci Honours degree in psychology at the University of Pretoria. I am overjoyed to be able to improve the overall well-being of the children who’s cases I work on. I am a Board Certified Autism Technician registered with the BICC. At The Star Academy we work miracles.

Autism school in PretoriaCarmen Wessels
I am a Senior Instructor at The Star Academy. My qualifications include a BA in Psychology at TUKS followed by an Honors
Degree in Psychology at UNISA. I am also a Board Certified Autism Technician. I found Star Academy, an autism school in Pretoria, as I was searching for options to broaden my Psychology experience. Within the first month of working at Star and with children on the spectrum I knew that I had found my calling. The things I love most about working at Star is learning and working with the diversity of Autism and related disorders and being a part of the amazing and unbelievable results ABA can produce. Witnessing the children’s gains and improvements on a daily basis, no matter how small, is the most fulfilling component.

Autism school in PretoriaTrisha van Riel
I completed my honours degree in Psychology in 2011 at the University of Pretoria. I am also registered as a Board Certified Autism Technician with the Behavioral Intervention Certification Council based in the USA. During my third year as a psychology student, in 2010, I joined the amazing Star family. Since then my life has been transformed by the passion of my wonderful colleagues and the extraordinary children I work with. I am currently working as a Case Manager as well as a PROMPT supervisor. I love playing a role in giving our children a voice to communicate with.

Autism school in PretoriaLauren Jade Pillay
I’ve had the privilege of being a part  of The Star Academy for the last four years. I am a lead instructor and proud to be a Board Certified Autism Technician. Experiencing first-hand the growth and change we bring to each child is something truly remarkable. The Star Academy has a clear vision. To change lives. And while you might think it’s only the kids and parents lives you change the job really changes you. And it’s that change, growth and love of life that I cherish.

Autism school in PretoriaMikayla Oberholster
Being an instructor at Star Academy, autism school in Pretoria, is more than just providing therapy. It’s a chance to be a tool for active and positive change in each and every child’s life. Many people admire our patience and persistence but it is the perseverance of our children and their resilience that astounds me every day. Our kids try their absolute best and with the right motivation and guidance they achieve new heights everyday which is the ultimate for each instructor at Star. Seeing our kids succeed gives us more motivation and patience every day. It is what drives instructors to continue to
give more and more of themselves each session so that our children can shine brighter.

Autism school in PretoriaSinead Crookes
I’ve been working at Star, autism school in Pretoria, as a junior therapist for 6months. It’s super rewarding watching the kids grow and surpass previous things they might have found challenging. Seeing a kid reach new heights and accomplish each goal we set I think for me is the most rewarding.





Autism school in PretoriaLufuno Nekhavhambe
I love working at the Star Academy, autism school in Pretoria by seeing our kids doing what was ruled as impossible for them. Those little milestones like hearing the child say their first word or making the poo in the toilet. The feedback from the parents when the child generalizes the skills to the home environment. And most importantly, to know I am making a difference in someone’s life is amazing. What I love about coming to work everyday is seeing the kids doing what people thought was impossible for them.



Autism school in PretoriaDaniélla Ferreira
I love being part of Star, autism school in Pretoria, because every day is different. The team is incredibly supportive, motivational and so accepting! When one of our kiddies meet a goal, the team will cheer and rejoice, even without being on that child’s team. Where there is Team Pretoria, there is laughter too, even at 5pm on a Friday, there is laughter! Team Pretoria is a dream team! A team which has a focus on challenging Autism and making sure that each of our Stars receives the best of the best. I am so blessed and grateful to be part of Star Academy, but I’m even more blessed to be part of the incredible Pretoria Team! Never stop fighting Team Pretoria!

Fun Times with Pretoria Staff

Autism school in Pretoria