A Norfolk MP wants to change the law to provide more teacher training to support autistic children.

North Norfolk MP Duncan Baker’s Autism (Early Identification) Bill hopes to make autism modules a mandatory part of teacher training, helping to identify signs of the condition in children earlier.

Currently, only 39pc of teachers in mainstream schools have received more than half a day’s autism training, according to the National Autistic Society.

A survey by the charity found less than half of autistic children are happy at school, and almost three quarters of parents said their child’s school place did not fully meet their needs.

Great Yarmouth Mercury: North Norfolk MP Duncan BakerNorth Norfolk MP Duncan Baker (Image: Stuart Anderson)

Mr Baker said: “By increasing awareness and understanding among teachers on the indicators of autism, they will be in a better position to support pupils and recommend them for an assessment earlier, meaning children will be in a better place to thrive not only in schools but in later life."

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The Autism (Early Identification) Bill has been worked on in conjunction with FullSpektrum, Ambitious about Autism, and Keystone Consulting.

Andre Skepple, founder of FullSpektrum, said: "This bill is a landmark breakthrough for autistic children in the UK who've struggled to get the right education provision.

"It's a rallying call for change, offering crucial support. Early identification and intervention is the linchpin for their transformation, and I'm passionately backing this bill for the betterment of these children."

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Jolanta Lasota, Ambitious about Autism chief executive, added: “School is too often a difficult and hostile place for autistic children and young people, and this can have a heavy impact on their mental health, their ability to learn and their prospects in future life.

"It is vital that their needs are identified early so that support can be put in place, and that all education staff have autism training so that autistic children and young people meet teachers who understand them and can support them to achieve.”

Mr Baker will raise the bill in parliament on Tuesday (30 January).