I used to envy my friends who had children with learning disabilities and Asperger Syndrome. I watched their sons and daughters move from special education classes to regular classes–some even landed in our school district’s gifted and talented program. My understanding at the time was that since these kids were on the “graduation track”, they would likely go to college, enter the work force and go on to live independently.
I would later learn that academics alone are not enough.”My daughters have the grades and intelligence to get into college,” said my friend, Marnie Raymond. Her twin teenage girls have Asperger Sydrome.”But their underdeveloped social skills, lack of central coherence and poor executive functioning impact their ability to function without a great deal of support.
Now there is an option in the Bay Area for college-age youths with Asperger Syndrome, high-functioning autism, dyslexia, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, and other learning differences to help them transition into the real world–The College Internship Program CIPin downtown Berkeley.