Autism Intervention Program

The Autism Intervention Program (AIP) is a Department for Education one year program for students who are diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD), with students being selected through a Department for Education panel process. The AIP located at The Heights School P-12, runs programs to teach a variety of school self-management strategies to students, which they can apply when returning to their mainstream settings.

  • Classes consist of up to 8 students a teacher and full time SSO.
  • Eligible students attend the program full time for terms 1 and 2, then begin a transition back to their home mainstream school for 1 day in term 3 and 2 days in term 4.
  • Students from years 1 – 10 can apply for the program however classes for the following year will be determined by a panel that meets in term 3.
  • The AIP panel is chaired by the Department for Education Senior Advisor who determines individual eligibility through a specific application process against a set criteria for the following year intake.

Learners will be taught methods to think flexibly and self regulate their behaviour whilst meeting sensory needs in socially acceptable ways. Individually tailored programs will also target students’ academic needs.

Skills and strategies will be explicitly taught to address students’ –

  • Behavioural Responses
  • Language
  • Pragmatic (social) responses


Students are referred to the program for reasons including;

  • Difficulties in accessing the mainstream curriculum
  • Sensory issues or anxieties which impact on classroom learning
  • Deficits in social functioning or difficulties with social interactions
  • Difficulties with self-regulation
  • Difficulties opting into tasks and following teacher directions

Applying for the program

  • A Department for Education Psychologist must determine and recommend that the student has potential to benefit from the specialised environment and curriculum provided in the AIP.
  • The student must be enrolled in a Department for Education site.
  • Students are not eligible if they exhibit long term unsafe behaviours.
  • Please note, it is not possible to enrol a child into the AIP program through The Heights School enrolment process. Also The Heights School does not allow direct enrolment for students exiting the AIP.

Family Involvement

Parent/Carer involvement in the AIP is essential for the success of the student whilst in the program. Parents will be invited to meet with staff and be involved in setting goals that will be part of the student’s Autism Spectrum Support Plan.