Children with Autism in the People’s Republic of China: Diagnosis, Legal Issues, and Educational Services

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Since the late 1970s, special education in the People’s Republic of China has experienced significant reform and fast development. However, education for children with severe developmental disabilities, especially autism spectrum disorders (ASDs), is still the greatest challenge in the field. This paper aims to give readers an overview of what is happening to children with ASDs in China. We first address the issue of prevalence of ASDs, and then offer an introduction to the diagnostic process. After that, a review of disability-related legislation is provided, followed by a description of current treatment options and available educational services. Finally we introduce all extent service providers and their roles.