As GoogleMaster pointed out on my previous post:
To advance as a software engineer, it's not enough to be a great coder. You have to be able to communicate with people who speak business language, both receiving and transmitting. On the other hand, if J just wants to code, there are probably positions for that, as long as he's okay not advancing up the career path.That makes sense, and luckily there are indeed still positions in which coders work mostly on their own rather than in groups. Since J has no aspirations other living independently and having a nice stash of ceiling fans, non-advancement up the career path is fine with him. In this, I'm guessing that he's not alone.
But, interestingly, J has already had to work in groups in his computer science classes. And, knock on wood, that seems to be going OK. Hopefully his group mates see him as an asset; he is, after all, quite good at coding. Plus, he is quite capable of communicating about programming tasks.
But group work in English class is different. Here he cannot possibly be seen as an asset; only as a liability. So his group mates excluded him and did not respond to his email messages--and, adding injury to insult, his teacher blamed him for not managing to cooperate with his group and gave him a really low grade.
In other words, for the autistic child, group work in computer science classes and group work in English classes are completely different ballgames.
They're also completely different ballgames for everyone. While group work on computer science projects in computer science class may reflect an actual reality outside the classroom, as GoogleMaster suggests it does, group work in English class on writing assignments does not reflect an actual reality outside the classroom. Writers do not write in groups. We may collaborate and each write sections of a paper or chapters of a book, but we do not write together. We may ask our collaborators or other peers to review and edit our work, but we handpick people we trust, not just random people who happen to be around. And most of our actual writing we do independently.
Not only does group work in English class not reflect a reality outside the classroom; neither is it an efficient way to improve your writing. The way to improve your writing is to do your own writing and get expert feedback; group writing projects are conducive to neither.
Group work in English class, in other words, is not only autism unfriendly, but gratuitously so. And any school that purports to be autism friendly needs to provide better options--for everyone.