Teacher and pupil

We wanted to be part of a like-minded group able to provide and deliver the best care and interventions for autistic young people.

Our ethos

Our Autism Accreditation programme provides autism-specific quality assurance for hundreds of organisations throughout the UK and across the world. By providing a unified standard of excellence and a systematic framework for continuous self-examination and development, we aim to continuously improve the quality of service provision for autistic people.

The history of Autism Accreditation

The National Autistic Society's Autism Accreditation programme has a long history dating back to the early 1990s. In response to the 1990 Community Care Act, and a number of high profile reports of poor practice within care services, The National Autistic Society appointed a working party. The working party group met on a monthly basis throughout 1991 and early 1992. The deliberations concluded with The National Autistic Society producing two written papers in response to the content of the 1990 Act describing the expectations of quality and practice within residential care services and within education and training provision. It also resulted in the publishing of a guidance booklet for services provided by The National Autistic Society.  

In April 1992 the Chairman of the Confederation of Service Providers for People with Autism (CoSPPA) met with the Director of Services at The National Autistic Society. They discussed the work that had been undertaken by the working party and a request that had been made to investigate the setting up of a scheme that would establish and regulate autism standards of care and education for The National Autistic Society and their affiliated local societies. Read more.

As a supported employment service we are not regulated by Ofsted or CQC and knew that we wanted to ensure we were working to best practice in our industry.

Autism Accreditation and The National Autistic Society

Autism Accreditation is run by and for The National Autistic Society. The wider organisation has been heavily involved with Accreditation for many years, from its first imaginings and onwards through its ongoing development, as well as requiring its own services and schools to follow and meet the standards set out within its frameworks.

Young woman and support worker  

Autism Accreditation and autism practice 

Autism Accreditation aims to set and encourage high standards of provision for autistic adults and children based on a personalised model of support. While methods should be evidence-based and reflect what has been shown to have had positive outcomes for autistic people, the research has also shown that there is no ‘one size fits all’ approach and therefore it is essential that approaches are tailored for the individual.

Autistic people are entitled to receive practical support if they require it to help them overcome the challenges they face in a society which very often fails to recognise or accommodate their needs. That support needs to be rooted in an understanding that autism is an integral part of who a person is, not a disorder to be treated or suppressed so that the autistic person can present as more ‘normal’. Rather, support needs to work with a person’s autism.

Support should build upon the individual’s strengths, assets, interests and talents and enhance their self-esteem and sense of self-worth. It is not about doing things for the autistic person but rather providing them with the tools, skills and confidence to enable them to take control over their own lives. This process should start from their earliest years and should be the terms of reference by which the quality and impact of support is measured.

Excellent schools and services for autistic people do not work in isolation but rather seek to share good practice to promote more inclusive communities.

Having this quality assurance enables us to give peace of mind to all our service users, that the service they are receiving is of the highest possible quality, one that is always developing and determined to improve, that the methods implemented are evidence-based and that the service overall is one they deserve.

Join Accreditation today