A Growing Problem
Kayleigh has two years left at the Marcia D. Smith School in Gaithersburg, Md., and is eligible for 25 hours of paid help a week through the Autism Waiver, a Maryland Medicaid program.
But when she turns 21, these services will no longer be available. “That’s the scary time for everyone,” Marlene said. “There are big waiting lists for services.” In 1993, the year Kayleigh was diagnosed, there were 260 students in the Maryland Public School System identified as autistic.