Because many children with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) have sensory sensitivities, receiving a haircut can often be a difficult experience for both youngsters as well as their parents. External stimuli such as the brushing, clipping, spraying and combing that a typical haircut or trim entails can often trigger negative behaviours in children with autism.
Administrators at the school therefore decided to offer children the opportunity to have it done in their classrooms where specific accommodations would be made to make the process easier.
As a result, during these customized sessions the children are permitted to take frequent breaks, be comforted by parents and eat snacks while their hair is being done. With the school being the only one in the district that has a classroom for students with ASD, it has proven to be a godsend for those who are benefiting from the initiative.
According teacher Paul Doher, the children are responding well to the program with haircuts taking an hour less than they did when it first began last December. Helen Skyles, the mother of two of the students asserts:
“Just that little bit of progress is just so rewarding.”
Source: Haley Nelson on the Wilx.com news website: Teachers Helping Students With Autism with In-class Haircuts