The social and emotional functioning of students with an autistic spectrum disorder during the transition between primary and secondary schools.


The transition from the primary to the secondary phase in education can be a pivotal moment for many students, but for students who have autism, their difficulties with socialisation and emotional regulation can make this time period especially challenging. This article explores the experiences of key stakeholders regarding the issue of students with an autistic spectrum disorder (ASD) transitioning from primary to secondary school. Five students with an ASD who were about to transfer to mainstream secondary schools, their parents and members of their primary and secondary school staff were invited to participate in the study. Using mixed methods of data collection, a complex picture of student experiences was discovered. The article highlights the need for further research in the field of school transitions for the student with ASD.