BCPS in the News

Fifth Annual Autism in Flight at Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport

Tuesday, May 16, 2017

Taking family vacations with a child with autism can be stressful.  Families facing this challenge will have the opportunity to simulate the experience of commercial airline travel during the fifth annual Autism in Flight. Students and their families get a chance to walk through a full airport experience, including ticketing, security, boarding, taxiway ride on the tarmac, and even a water salute on their return to the gate.   

Broward County Public Schools (BCPS) is partnering with JetBlue Airways, Broward County Board of County Commissioners, Broward County Aviation Department and Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport to make this annual event possible.

Approximately 60 fourth and fifth grade students with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) from seven BCPS elementary schools are participating: Coconut Palm Elementary School, Dania Elementary School, Floranada Elementary School, Norcrest Elementary School, Park Springs Elementary School, Silver Lakes Elementary School and Tradewinds Elementary School.

The fifth annual Autism in Flight is the culminating event of six weeks of classroom lessons focusing on airport travel. On the day of the event, students and their family members pack their bags and meet at the Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport for an opportunity to practice the travel experience in a realistic, relaxed setting, allowing families and children to be better prepared for future travel.  

Wednesday, May 17, 2017, 11 a.m.
Opening Ceremony

Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport
Terminal 3, Baggage Claim Area, Carousel 8

Air travel can be challenging for individuals affected by autism due to symptoms associated with the disorder, including hypersensitivity to large crowds, loud noises and communication difficulties. As a result, many families do not fly due to the fear of the response it could elicit from their children with autism, and subsequently fellow travelers and airline crewmembers. Trained JetBlue crewmembers and BCPS behavioral consultants and staff provide assistance throughout the Autism in Flight event.

“Committed to educating all students to reach their highest potential.”

Broward County Public Schools (BCPS) is the sixth largest school district in the nation and the second largest in the state of Florida. BCPS is Florida’s first fully accredited school system since 1962. BCPS has over 271,000 students and approximately 175,000 adult students in 236 schools, centers and technical colleges, and 99 charter schools. BCPS serves a diverse student population, with students representing 208 different countries and 181 different languages. To learn more, visit browardschools.com. Follow BCPS on Twitter @browardschools and Facebook at facebook.com/browardschools, and download the
free BCPS mobile app.